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Author Topic: My Story Aliens stole my W!!!!! Part 9: You spin me round (like a record)

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It's time!!! Time for a new thread  8)

Previous thread: https://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php?topic=11418.0

I had a talkative W today......  :D :P :-\

Very interesting.... thought I'd share as it means both something and nothing all at the same time...... but I like glances into the mind of the MLC'er, and to (maybe) help others see what (possibly) their MLC'er is going thru as well.
Good for figuring out my thoughts, feelings and growth too  8)

So, this morning I get a call from W, bright and early. She sounds really good. Happy, energetic, and she wants something (of course). Once she let me know what she needed, she was off (not a surprise). This time she realized that she ran off onto vacation without setting up her car payment (and it's due). LOL!!!
So I wished her a good day, and left it for what it was: Nice to hear her in a good mood. It is so rare that it was a treat to hear that in her voice.

It was a long but a very good day for me. Great day at work, and diet was pretty good (not perfect). All in all, a very good day, bottom to top.
Then I go for my walk, and W starts calling. Over and over..... I don't see it because I'm walking and talking to my mom (as I do every night).
I catch it, and call her back after a spell.

What follows is a pleasant conversation, and one of the longest calls we've had in a long time (just over 30min).
It is all over the place...... and just like all longer calls in the past, it runs the gamut of small talk to the deep stuff. It's like they dance around (like a boxer) just waiting for the moment to move in. I'm used to it, no surprises.
Normally when W wants to talk, and it's one of those longer talks...... the expression that normally comes out is one of wanting to work on things, or improve things..... and it was the same this time. I know not to get my hopes up. It is a reoccurring theme that normally has no follow-thru, but it does give me hope that the feelings for me are in there and the desire is in there..... buried, and only able to reemerge for a few brief moments.

This time (after small talk) she wanted to talk about "working on things and getting out of this limbo". Ahhhh-Ha!!! Meaningless.  :( I know she means it in one part of her mind (at that moment) but I also know that moment will pass. To be honest, the work she's talking about is going to be very difficult. I really want to do it, and I said as much. Actually I probably said too much tonight, but it had to be done with the intention of leaving a seed for her to find her way back. An olive branch if you will.
I agreed, and said I really wanted to work on it..... she asked "what do you want to do?". I replied that doing something together, regularly. Something fun. Something new. See something new. Do something new. Try something new. I know that new and exciting is something that really appeals to MLC'ers but I'm also ready as an H to really do new things together. This will be a new R if we make it, and new things is going to be required. Being able to bend and be flexible to make something new is necessary.
Well...... HAHAHAHAH...... she replies that we have to "fix the old stuff first". Ahhhhhhh, now there's the hard part. That will be very hard. I reply that I'm looking forward to doing that, and that I want to do that, am on-board to do that 100% (which I am, and I would LOVE to try fixing those things - but I also know now is not the time, she's DEEP into MLC). So I express my willingness, and ask if she feels the same way...... she says she does. Hurray!!!! (it really means nothing, just a passing thought of something buried deep in her heart)
She also wants me to engage her, and to bring up "the hard stuff" so she doesn't have to. I find that a little funny.... I had those "R" cards to picking someone's brain, and that was very difficult for her.... I can't imagine what going into the "hard stuff" would be like. She's in no condition for rationally doing that.
My take-away from the whole thing: It means nothing. The moment will pass, but hurray that a kernel of wanting is in there somewhere. Will it grow? Probably not for a long time, but I will keep hope alive.

This idea though of working on things, I sure want to...... but to be honest, it scares the hell out of me. I know it's not for today, or I'd really be scared. I've been thru a lot of damage over our M. I really love my W, more than she'll ever know or understand. To work on the neglect, hurt and resentment..... it will not be easy, especially after minimizing myself and making excuses for her (to myself) for soooooo long. It will be very difficult..... but that fight is for another day.
I know it can be overcome, I know I'm willing to do the work to overcome it. Will she? I can't say.
Another thing which troubles me is sooooo many of the problems she is referring to come from the very long 7-year "shadow period" where she shut down emotionally. I'm not saying I have no blame, I certainly do. So much I didn't understand back then, not that I could have prevented MLC either though.
What she wants (IMO) can only be overcome with the help of a good MC, but we're not at the point of being able to do that yet. She's not out of MLC yet. I know there's tons of pain from that time (on both sides), I think her desire to talk about this stems from the actual pain but also the desire to find fault and assign blame (and justification). So it's a dangerous desire at this point.
Both eyes open.

Then we talk about how it is over there, and if she likes the quiet. She does, but says being alone with her thoughts is very difficult. She begins to cry. She is "very frustrated with the stress and anxiety, and just wants to feel happy once again".
I let her know that I am here for her, that I'm always here for her. She becomes quiet. I ask if she knows that. She slowly and quietly says yes.
I offer that when she is bored or sad or lonely..... that I am here, and if she just needs to hear a voice...... call and say "talk", and I will talk.
So then I talk (a demonstration) and we go over the events of the day, family, just all over the place. It lands on COVID and brings out a pity party in her, and all the stress it gives her (more tears).  :-\
Shortly thereafter, she wants to go and I wish her a good night and good sleep. I tell her that she is missed: That the birds miss her, and that I miss her.
I can tell she likes that, and then she goes.

The long and short is: She continues to be so conflicted, and so confused. I believe she is trying and fighting, but it's very obvious that she's still looking to external solutions, and that's no surprise.

I try to show patience and love. It's really hard to not run back, scoop her up and "save the girl". That is my 1st inclination, but she's still in the fight of her life, and I'm still on the sidelines...... cheering and hoping.

Ok, my novel is done for the night.  ;)

One day at a time,

-SS
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W - 40
M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
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BD - 27th April 2019

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That was quite a good novel Standing, and welcome to your new thread.

All good, you did great, but never let yourself take too much serious.
Smart of you because as long as she is in MLC you know most was just a fleeting moment she will forget about by today.  LOL

Just keep doing what you're doing.  She baking nicely.   ;)
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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Thank you T  :D

One of the things she said yesterday was "I'll call you tomorrow".

Great time for that "here one moment, gone the next", needless to say I'm not expecting a call.  ;)

-SS
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Journaling:

Well, it happened again......

W hasn't called, and I'm leaving her alone.
Each day I check the tracker on my phone just to know she's ok, and to see if she's still quarantining. Each time I check, there she is: not having moved (well, her phone not having moved). Since I'm the only one who knows she's down there, well..... I feel like if something bad happened, that I am the only one who could help (which isn't true, but if it was you... how would you feel?).

Well...... today was the day..... I had hoped it wouldn't happen but it doesn't surprise me either........ I opened the app and it says "GPS turned off".
My heart sank a little. She has just shy of a week of quarantine left, is there any reason to turn off GPS? No.... there isn't. Unless you don't want someone seeing where you have gone. It is deliberate, it's not like the phone is turned off.

My mind floats to ideas about "well, you haven't called her.... this is partly your fault". This is a lie. It's the hardest thing ever to leave them alone, AND it'd just push them away if you did. Strength...... even when you don't want to be strong.
Well, I'm not calling while her GPS is turned off..... heck I'm not calling when it's turned on. I've not said a work to her family.... she didn't want them to know, they don't know. I'm not going to allow someone to say something that makes her think "oh look.... SS goes running to them to whine and complain". They have no control over her, just like me.

A tough night. It makes me remember shortly after BD when she disappeared and went on lots of business trips, and then she removed herself from the tracker app. I remember how much that hurt, and how scary it was for me (Note: App and GPS = different things). It was such a relief when she calmed down a couple months later and rejoined. HA!!! Just in case anyone is wondering..... she checks on me in the tracker too. I thought she didn't, but there was one time when she admitted it (a long time ago, but during the worst of monster), so I know so does it too. She wouldn't turn the GPS off unless she was aware and thinking about it. Really is that case of "it seems like they don't care, but they're always watching and listening.... even when you think they aren't".

Also had to go to Hallmark and look at ornaments (alone) today. The limited editions are out and the only way to get them is to show up. A little reminder of something special that we used to do together..... but I did score the limited edition bird ornament that we want each year more than any other one.

I wonder how long this will last.

One day at a time,

-SS   
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BD - 27th April 2019

m
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Hi SS:

I am sorry to hear, I can imagine it is both very hard and very disheartening. I know how hard this is but what would happen if you removed her from your tracker app? And disallowed her from tracking you? Not for any punitive reason mind you, but to remove the option to check. I know you are doing a lot and its a sign of strength to leave her alone, but even the option of tracking her will take up headspace and lead to a lot of emotional energy being used up.

Truth is she does what she does, and you said it yourself you can’t control her. You can only control your reaction to what she does and decide what YOU will do. Its funny in how many small ways we are still attached even when we “detach.” Part of turning it all off is to make sure you will have the energy and endurance to stay with this for as long as you want. Because it is “one day at a time” but energy must be preserve “one day at a time.”

Just a thought.
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W
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Hi Standing Strong.

This is a marathon that you did not choose to run nor were you prepared for it. You haven't even reached the 5K marker yet.

This is all about you surviving her crisis. It's not about her surviving her crisis. She will hit rock bottom one day and you will have to have prepared yourself for the moment.

The sad reality is you maybe picking out those ornaments by yourself for sometime to come.

Your heart betrays you. It is your enemy during her crisis. We continue to operate as husbands while they abandoned their role as wife.  My heart was in it for 3-4 years and now it's just dead. I believe it needs to be dead as this crisis is all about our survival.

Mine only ever calls me when she needs something otherwise she will have me blocked. I was still engulfed by monster at a little over a year in during the Summer of 2016.

There is nothing that you can do to influence the trajectory of her crisis. They are going to do whatever they want to do.

Remember this has nothing to do with love. Love her from afar. Find a way too bury it. This is about your survival. Anyway I've been silently reading along and you have handled yourself well. I didn't start walking 50,000 steps a day until the Summer of 2017. I was running by the Summer of 2018. 

Start running, kayaking, and find some mountains to climb.  Oh they will find us when they need us.  That's a given.  ;)

Pace yourself and take care
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F
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Standing, I agree with your other posters.  You are doing such a great job!  This is an endurance race, one that seems to never end...

I pray God gives you peace, strength and endurance to get through this with an intact marriage.  I know that is the goal for you at this point.  I agree with finding other hobbies!  I bought myself a paddle board some months back and we have several kayaks.  Anything that you enjoy will help get you through this.  Serving others would also be a great idea.  It helps us forget our own struggles.
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« Last Edit: July 13, 2020, 02:44:00 PM by Finding Joy »
Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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My xw had a two year period where she kept wanting to find her way out of limbo. Little did I know she was just waiting for om to finalize his divorce with his xw.

That's just a reality check.. make sure you're focusing on you and filling your life with great, awesome stuff and not just watching the phone.

One piece of advice I do have is if xw ever actually made good on her plans to "talk", the only way I'd do it now, is with a therapist.

It'd be too tempting and easy to want to go for walks and short trips to ease yourselves back into a sense of normality without really addressing the underlying problems.

A therapist will also help call out the BS to you a lot faster than you may want to admit it to yourself too.

Just some advice.. but hang in there man.. were all here for you.
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Hi Standing.

I'm sorry you are going through this right now.  Your W is spreading her wings and all you can do is let her go.

I've tried over the years to tell newbies, you have no control over them when they go through this crisis.  You have no influence over them until they figure this out for themselves.  You can not love them back, force them back, guilt them back or scare them back.

In my opinion,the worse thing you can do, which you are not doing, is have relationship talks with them.  It puts tremendous pressure on them.

Most of the time they are not even thinking about divorce so why plant that seed for them?  Don't even bring up divorce or separation.

When and if she calls just be light and friendly.

"Oh hi I was just thinking about you, how is everything going?  Have you had time to see your mom yet?  I bet she will be excited to see you."

No questioning her about anything else!!  You could maybe tell her a bit about what you have been doing...just to share.

Standing you are doing really good, considering the circumstances.
Just keep doing your thing and let her be for now.  No pressure is your best friend right now.
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« Last Edit: July 13, 2020, 06:55:10 PM by Thunder »
A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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Thank you G, T, W, FJ and M (I tried to spell something with all those letters, but couldn't think of anything clever  :) )

So last night her GPS turns on again. What time it was, I don't know. Late.

Then today, she calls. Not to make everything about her (it's not) but our MLC'ers are interesting aren't they? You can have a really good day (I did), but then you get a call and it kinda overshadows everything else. Shows I have a ways to go. I'm not sitting by the phone or anything like that...... it's just, funny.

Well..... W calls, and it's a video call. Woo-Woo, hubba-hubba (LOL), I actually get to see her instead of just talking. I do like that.
She's in a good mood, and acting quite normal. It always amazes me how this changes so frequently.
It was pleasant, she gave me a video tour of her rented apartment, we chatted.... and she tried to get off the call a couple times...... here's where my LBS training has come in (LOL): I keep talking. Spin up whatever I can think of, just to keep it rolling...... and it works!! W can't stop talking as long as I bring something up and she can lend her voice/opinion too. There's no way she will let something be said without HER having a say-so. LOL!!
That seems to please her to no end, and it was nice to just have a light, airy conversation. Very pleasant. Every time she stalled out or had nothing else to say: *BAM* change the subject. I'm going to have to get more creative in the future, she LOVES hearing stories about life.
I took her on a home tour and showed her that life continues over here........ she got to see the birds, her plant that I'm watering, and all the newly assembled weightlifting equipment (she even rode around on one as I demonstrated it). 

Communication was something that suffered during the years of shadow, and it's something that I want to work on. Funny how it becomes difficult, and even though we're not reconnecting now, and she not out now...... I do want to be a better communicator with her long before we get there.

So talk, talk, talk....... and I know the longer she talks, the more that will come out. I'm not disappointed: She tells me that she left the apartment and maybe she's not suppose to do that.... that she went to the park and ran three miles and exercised (she doesn't say when, so I'll assume while she had her GPS off). She also mentions that she goes to a cafe down the street for all her food every day (which has not shown up on her tracker at all during her trip). 
Do I believe all this? No, but I don't have to either and I don't have to stress about it either. That she said anything, is something... and that is enough. I asked no questions about it. Knowing that she is safe is all that I really wanted/needed.

She's ran into a potential issue relating to COVID: they're clamping down, and now there is a concern that her mom may have been exposed (unlikely but remotely possible). If she has, then she will not get to see her mom at all on her trip (which was the whole point). Until she's tested and the all clear is given, W will continue to hide out at her secret apartment.  :-X  She still has told no one that she's there.  ::)

Speaking of COVID: I'm getting a little concerned that my trip at the end of AUG is going to be canceled. It hasn't been yet but the way the lock-downs are going back into effect I wouldn't be surprised. That would really stink, but...... it's ok. Not the end of the world, other conferences will be available later.

One day at a time,

-SS



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Big update tonight....

Good day, got a lot done, not expecting a call from W. Leave for my walk and ring-ring.... it's W.
Wow!! Two days in a row.  :D

She sounds normal, which is good considering she was doing really good last night (bad normally follows good).
Well, bad did follow good.  :(

We start talking, and I'm parked at my walking place..... needless to say I did not walk tonight.
She lets me know she's reading a Christian book about making good decisions and about being happy. Well that sounds good!! Then she says she doesn't like the book because it's too simplistic. She wants all the answers to being happy.   :o

She says her mind is like sludge, that it is all over the place and none of it moves. Nothing is happening but it is overwhelming. She doesn't know what she wants and can't seem to figure out anything: Sludge.

Then then she asks if I want children.  ???
Well..... I'd be fine with children, but I'd be fine without children too. I explain this and also offer that adopted children come with problems and it would take a lot of love and time to help them. (Note: She had brought up adopting a couple times while in the shadow phase. I thought at the time it was the bio-clock or some sort of covering up wants or something. It didn't go anywhere, but I was open to it rationally. Good thing too, it was the shadow period of looking for external solution to her emotionally shutting down).
Then I ask her if she wants kids...... the answer is "no". (Then why ask?).  ???

Then she asks what I want. I ask in life? Right now? She says overall.
I tell her my wants: To serve God, to have a great M, do things of consequence, to be madly in love, to still have peace but do new things. You know, big stuff.
I ask her what she wants..... oh what a list I get:
-She wants everyone to stop judging her. Everyone judges her and she hates it.
-She wants everyone to stop expecting her to be perfect. Family, friends, co-workers, me.... everyone expects her to be perfect.
-She want to not be tired anymore.
-She wants better communication between us
-She wants to not be on the sidelines of her life: It's her life and she wants to be in control
-She wants to figure out what she wants.
-She wants to not be treated like a China Doll by everyone.
-She wants to not be treated like she's broken.
-She want stop being treated like she's lost her mind.
-She wants her family to stop thinking she's lost her mind (this was news to me. I didn't know they had talked to her about it)
-She wants to be human and not perfect.

Then she does further to explain what she wants:
-"One meltdown and you think I'm in some kind of crisis"
-"I've only shown my logical side, people are freaking out that there's more to me"
-"I have a Fun, Free-spirited, hidden side of me and I'm sick of hiding it"
-"People need to accept ALL of me, or they don't need to be in my life".  :o (She talking about family here, cut them off? OMG. This is MIL 2.0)
-"People freaking out that I got tattoos.... I'm an artist, of course I have Tattoos"
-"I show a little emotion for the 1st time and everyone wants me to go back to being the same as before. I'm not doing it".
-"I don't know what I want to do. I have a good job, is that all there is? What importance does that have? I like to paint but I can't motivate myself to do it". 

Well, that was quite a list..... and all of it was about her (not a surprise). But it was totally devoid of anything big..... nothing about God, job, dreams, family, etc.
Not a surprise.

[Sigh] You know where this is going right?
It's been many months since I've been drawn into an R talk, and I knew I had to stand my ground. These only come at key moments.
She goes off on communication. She goes off that I don't tell her when I don't like something (this is 100% true, I've always been a win-win kinda guy) I reply that I'm working on it. She asks me when the last time I told her I don't like something, and she's right. She goes off on not having say-so in things, and brings up IC. She didn't sign up for IC, she wanted MC...... uh oh..... That I made the choice for both of us and it's not what she agreed to. She says IC has been good and useful, but it's not MC.
I explain that the experts say that IC is the right move and MC happens when THEY determine it's time. I say I'm all for MC and look forward to it WHEN THE IC SAYS SO. She explains "see? you've consulted experts and books but didn't talk to me". Good point (except she's not in a state of mind for talking about these things). I explain that the importance of doing this right requires experts, that I don't know what is best and thus I LEFT IT TO EXPERTS. She didn't have a good argument about that, and this begins the "record skipping" of previous R talks.

She jumps to a new topic: Communication, me making decisions and her dreams. She puts on me that it's my fault that her art printer isn't working, that I said I'd fix it, then changed it to us fixing it, that she can't do it, and everything is on hold because of it. I stop her and say "I don't like it when you put all this on me. I have acted in the best interest and intentions for your dreams". She agrees. I list all her projects from the last four years and how I've had her back each time (giving examples).... "no matter what you've wanted to do, I've been there supporting you, every time. Every time I've had your back". She agrees.
I go into a long explanation about her printer and how from the start I wanted it to be a project we work on together. Then I explain the happiest time in my life when we worked on a business project together..... going into great detail. and how this is the same thing to me. "What good is it if I just fixed it and you said thanks? I want us to toil on it together. Your victory is my victory. My victory is your victory. Share in the triumph together, struggle to fix a problem together. The experience shared, together". She says "Why didn't you tell me this 6 months ago?". Me: "I did, just not to the same degree. This is me working on communication". She gets very quiet, I think she's startled to know how I feel (which is very deep and genuine).

She says she need to go, and I tell her good night.

My take-aways:
One thing that stood out was I asked about which day she'd show up at her mom's. She wasn't sure. She said her mom was busy, and it could be over the weekend or sometime early next week. Big Red Flag. I'll be looking to see if this slips further and further. I already know she is masking where she is. It is possible that she comes up with something to not see her mom at all, or just a very brief visit.
The "free-spirit" comment was a very big red flag to me, as was the repeated desire to not be judged and not being perfect. Big, huge red flags.
The desire to do MC is an enormous red flag. It tells me the desire to find something to justify...... caused by guilt.
IMO she was fishing.... looking for a fight, looking for justification. I didn't give her either (but MLC'er perception has a strange way of twisting things). I feel good that I really did the very best I could.

There is absolutely a struggle going on within her, and she still has no direction and is looking for external solutions. It is heart-breaking but there is nothing I can do. She will figure it out or she won't. I hope she makes good decisions but whatever she chooses she is responsible for herself.
I will continue to give time, space, understanding and love.

I think I've grown quite a bit, but like other R talks..... my hands were shaking when it was over. Not because I was mad (I never get mad, and that will have to change as I grow) but because it's so hard to see someone you love so much be in so much pain and confusion. Knowing that they can easily destroy themselves completely. I had hoped (and still hope) that this will not happen, that some shred of her will endure thru the process but I realize more and more that the road is walked alone and my cheering from the sidelines (in the end) may still be too close for her. I really hope not, but both eyes open.
With the comments today about cutting off family, now I understand the teaching about the MLC'er having to repair ties with family on their road to repairing everything. I really didn't understand the possibility of this until tonight. She has a small family, it only leaves SIL, FIL and MIL. To cut any of them off is to cut off a HUGE part of her support network. I hope it doesn't happen, but it's obvious she's thinking about it. Unimaginable until tonight.

As for me: I will endure, grow, improve and KEEP MOVING FORWARD. Always forward.

One day at a time,

-SS
 

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m
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First I want to say you should be very proud of how you handled all of that. I remember those long drawn out talks. Funny one of mine was parked in the parking lot of the tennis courts, listening for over an hour while a family of deer were grazing and looking at me in the car. That was a bit surreal. I had many of these talks over the first 1.5 years, some for 3-4 hours.

These talks are hard, complex, draining like you say. And in my opinion you handled it like a champ. You stood your ground, didn’t accuse, didn’t get drawn in. And I can imagine it was draining and your hands were shaking. Its interesting they can sometimes perfectly describe what is going on inside, but it doesn’t connect at all to why, how they can change it. Its a very strange disconnect of action/consequence. This is both from seeing that their lives are where they are because of THEIR decisions (the entire blaming you for the printer not working is the silly example) and in the sense of they are in control of WHERE it goes (get help, both from people in your life and professionals). Instead they dump all responsibility and executes on the person that is the closest to them.

Stay your course, stay detached. She will swing on the pendulum, she may get better, she may get worse. And in a strange way none of it matters right now. What matters most is you holding yourself, and as a stander, for you to not take damage. Both to yourself and to the love you have for her. Because she may do or say a lot of things that if you are not guarded will ding or damage both.

Stay strong my friend.
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So sorry for you Standing.

She's really given you a lot of 'something' from this trip... I guess this is her way of looking into herself, finding her way to next stop.... she either comes back or she doesn't.  Not much you can do.   

But like you wrote, there are many potential red flags....   Hang in there.

She goes off on communication. She goes off that I don't tell her when I don't like something (this is 100% true, I've always been a win-win kinda guy) I reply that I'm working on it.

So you're more of a 'good guy / kind guy'? I really cannot fathom you being a spineless 'nice guy'....

Alvin.
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Kids (at time of BD): G19,G18,G14,G12,S5

*** Every person on the planet is like you - a human being, most likely doing the best they can. Some are just more in control of themself than others ***
*** There are things you control and things you can't control, but what you can control is your attitude towards things you can't control. ***
*** You're not going to master the rest of your life in one day. So relax. Master the present day. Then just keep doing that every day. ***
*** Without trust fear is the only possibility. Place your trust in your own wings. ***

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So you're more of a 'good guy / kind guy'? I really cannot fathom you being a spineless 'nice guy'....

Alvin.

That is a bit of a struggle..... I'm not sure. Am I a "nice guy"?.... boy I sure don't want to be but I think there are some elements (not all). This has been a big part of my growth: being ok with rocking the boat (at home). The shadow period had been sooooo long...... I had gotten to a point of just trying to keep the peace (and I am very much a peacemaker). I know that before shadow it was not this way (at home), but year after year of her slide just wore me down, wore me down.... until at the end of those 7 years it was like "what do you want to do? I'm good with anything". It pains me to say that, and to look back at it and see myself..... it was a devastatingly long shadow period. Really took a toll on me, but now I'm back to where I was before, even better actually. So that has been such a blessing (and also knowing now what the heck all those years were).

Good guy = yup
Kind/Emphatic guy = yup
Strong/Durable guy = yup
Beyond ultra calm guy = yup
"Nice guy" = not sure. Hope not, and if I was.... no longer.  :D

What I want to be: Assertive Superhero Guy...... with huge muscles.  ;)

-SS
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So you're more of a 'good guy / kind guy'? I really cannot fathom you being a spineless 'nice guy'....

Alvin.

I am not sure how one leads to the other. Good is different than kind is different than spineless.

Is there a thought here missing?
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Stay strong my friend.

Thank you Marvin for the kinds words, really appreciate it.  :D

Minor journaling:

I like to document my drama, just so I can go back to it later.....  ;D

SIL texts me and tells me that W told her H that she's in the other country.
Why she'd tell him and not anyone else: weird if you ask me..... but they have some kind of kinship (he's an ex-MLC'er). Maybe she feels he understands..... well, whatever.
SIL was not pleased and so I called her to touch base. Since the cat was out of the bag I didn't have a secret to keep anymore. I have to admit it felt good to not be the only one to know anymore...... but I did good and didn't spill any beans that weren't mine to spill.
Something that DID come up while talking to SIL was the context of W telling her H that she was down there...... She said (without saying) that she had just arrived in this other country, not that she had been there 2 weeks already.  :o
This made SIL's eyes pop-out and she couldn't believe (but did believe) that she would lie (without lying). Why lie?
Par for the course, it makes no sense but nothing does  :P

Anyway, just jotting it down. It's really nice having such a wonderful SIL...... although she's terrified that she will enter MLC in a couple years. I think that's unlikely.  :)

-SS
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Another week has gone by....... Journaling

My birthday has come and gone (not overly happy about that, I'm not getting any younger but I am getting BETTER!!).

I weighed myself a couple days ago, have lost anther 3 pounds in the last two weeks  ;D and my body fat is right at the edge about about cross into the teens  ;D ;D ;D
This makes me sooooo happy. Finally figured out the formula to get my body to react and adjust the way I want it. It's a lot of work, a lot of strict diet, and a lot of TIME to get the body to eat itself...... but it's happening, and at a steady predictable pace. I don't know how many months it'll take to get to my target of 10% body fat, but I will be SUPER shredded and looking incredible once I get there. Really look forward to that day.

Went to my aunt's for dinner on my birthday.... it was so good to finally see family. They are concerned about COVID but their concern for me outweighed it. How nice. My cousin's daughter was there (19) and asked how old I was. I told her and she couldn't believe it. "I thought you were 35, that's what you look like".  8) :P :D Well, lets see if I can take a couple more years off.  :P I have always looked younger than I am, curious how old I look once I'm the terminator. LOL!!!

As for W....... I was curious if she'd contact me on my B-day.... she did. Four texts in a row "Happy Birthday", "Happy Birthday", "Happy Birthday", "How are you"..... and three phones calls in a row (until I finally picked up). Mild panic? We talked, she was "normal". Last night we were texting (also nice) and she asked to go hiking together when she returns. That's nice, it's also just talk. No expectations. I said "I want to go camping" (which is something I've never had as interest in). She agreed..... also just talk. No expectations, she'll probably forget all of it anyway. Just be nice and maybe something will stick at some point, but I'm not hanging around waiting for it to happen..... I've got things to do and muscles to build.  :) :) :)

This makes me wonder..... the MLC'er often will do things especially at BD to make themselves more attractive to the opposite sex in their attempt to pull away. Plastic surgery, working out, skin potions, etc. Mine did this, and is still doing some of it, although most has fallen to the wayside. Me on the other hand have been very consistent and I'm well on the way to being in the best shape (and most attractive) since I was 20. I wonder if that makes the MLC'er worry, or if  they just continue to not care as they progress, OR if it also is a factor in making them move toward you as time moves on? Not that it matters, I'm doing this for me, and I like what I see.

One day at a time,

-SS
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Happy Birthday, Standing  :)
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T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

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Me on the other hand have been very consistent and I'm well on the way to being in the best shape (and most attractive) since I was 20. I wonder if that makes the MLC'er worry, or if  they just continue to not care as they progress, OR if it also is a factor in making them move toward you as time moves on?

First happy birthday, remember you are not getting older, your are getting less young! But seriously it is amazing the difference in direction between an MLCer who is in crises and an LBS who is in recovery. So mark and celebrate the "better" you in all aspects. Age is just a number, we can only be the age we are right now. Obviously this is a horrific idea to someone in MLC.

As for your question here is my answer: conceptually it doesn't matter and you should obviously not even worry about it. Do what you are doing, as you say, for yourself. That should always be the case for ALL of us. We can't control others and we certainly should not act or exist in reaction to what others may think of us. A million times more in case of MLC.

Experientially I know for a fact my wife has noticed all the positive changes in me and she absolutely DOES NOT CARE. So don't fall into the trap. In fact she always would turn it into how it will be easier for me to find someone else. We do not exist, we must be negated and erased. Only things that seem to resonate are the negatives, anything positive just hits the wall of filters they put up to be able to walk away and tolerate what they are doing. I know so many cases where spouses have showed off how great they look, or send pictures or mementos, or try to "break through" only to be met with silence and resultant pain.

Hang in there.
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It's interesting isn't it Marvin?
W just called and we talked for an hour....... strangely enough, she brought up this topic. She wanted to know all about my exercise, diet and how my body is getting better. She wanted to know my progress.  :o
Why? I have no idea. She had never asked as much as she just did. Odd.

They do go thru moments of missing us. Maybe it was one of those.

For me, I'm becoming dangerous, and I know it. Dangerous meaning, I'm a catch (not trying to be boastful or proud). The more attractive, the more the danger is of losing me. The more attractive, the less attractive an AP is. Sure perspective is all jacked up for them, but they take glimpses outside every so often, and what they observe goes back with them.
I don't think it's any accident she'd had the thought to want to go hiking or camping..... she has to on some level realize that I've been buttoning up our finances this last year. The warning bells (on some level) should be going off in her head..... and I'm about to launch a new business and could leave her behind. All done because it has to be done, but on a lessor note all done in part to help put a fire under her. She has much to lose, and I hope she knows it.

-SS
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The warning bells (on some level) should be going off in her head..... and I'm about to launch a new business and could leave her behind. All done because it has to be done, but on a lessor note all done in part to help put a fire under her. She has much to lose, and I hope she knows it.

Or if changing perspective....

"Good enough, I just want to feel I am good enough."...  and "why did you now have to become so Gosh Darn perfect"....     those are two phrases I've heard from  STBXW in this process.  As you know she struggless with self-esteem, self-value, self-worth and other demons...  I think the more I have worked (strived for perfection)  on myself, the less attracted she feels for me.  Possibly that is where some of the resentment and sadness within her roots from.  She does the mistake of comparing herself to me (and others). 

If thinking mindfully, we feel attracted to kind of persons we feel are on the same level as us.  Especially if/when "not in relationship" (and I think this holds true to our MLCrs regardless of them being live-ins or not, as they are not committed).... Except that image of  class is totally internal. If you are super confident person (not comparing yourself to anyone), you can go after anyone you desire.   If you have average confidence and self-value, then you likely seek another person of similar level (±1) .... but if you have issues, then you likely go with affairs down.   

So what your W sees and feels right now..  I really don't know. But since MLCrs see the the world differently... she might have totally different kind of 'warnings' on her head.... But it's not your issue.  You grow you, and she follows or not over time.  Building up self-esteem, self-value, confidence.... it's a process.  Slow and cumbersome process. 

Just my 5 cents worth.

Alvin.
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BD ("I don't love you"): Feb 2019, 
BD2 ("I don't want to fix this marriage."... D filed May 2020
Kids (at time of BD): G19,G18,G14,G12,S5

*** Every person on the planet is like you - a human being, most likely doing the best they can. Some are just more in control of themself than others ***
*** There are things you control and things you can't control, but what you can control is your attitude towards things you can't control. ***
*** You're not going to master the rest of your life in one day. So relax. Master the present day. Then just keep doing that every day. ***
*** Without trust fear is the only possibility. Place your trust in your own wings. ***

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Great points Alvin  :D

Yup, impossible to know..... the thing is, when we go hiking (or camping).... IF she follows thru with that (and I'm not expecting anything)..... I know it will come up, from her. Also impossible to have a totally honest, frank, rational conversation with someone with a fogged up head (as much as I would love that).
Perception, perception.
Nothing I can say will make a difference..... but she's smart, a really really smart woman. Too smart for her own good, and more stubborn than a mule (maybe the most stubborn person I've ever known..... LOL!!!).

I forgot to add a couple things from the 1 hour call the other day: She's blown all the cash she took with her (which was considerable). In quarantine and you blow a grand, in a third world country where everything is super cheap? Yeah. She's only at the halfway mark for her trip  :o
Needless to say, she hasn't observed quarantine: She spoke of buying stuff for the apartment she rented, and going out to restaurants. All the while, her phone hasn't moved since arriving.  :-X
She's suppose to be there visiting her mom. The day for dropping in on her was last Friday, then slipped to the weekend, then slipped to early in the week, then Wednesday.... and on Wednesday..... no mention at all about when (or if) that was going to happen. Instead it's "I'm busy with work". Uh huh.

They think they're trixy, don't they?
Filthy hobbits......

 ;)
One day at a time,

-SS
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I hope you had an awesome  birthday Standing :). I sometimes amuse myself with my h.  After a sangria last week I sent him a steamy legs picture captioned with, “you done messed up”.  I was just being a dork, but well, it’s still true:). I have nothing to lose by entertaining myself.

They aren’t thankful for what they had and he doesn’t realize that if I wanted someone in my life it could happen very easily.  Hopefully your wife starts waking up soon and recognizes you’ve done right by her!  You love her and your a great guy. 
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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I sometimes amuse myself with my h.  After a sangria last week I sent him a steamy legs picture captioned with, “you done messed up”.  I was just being a dork, but well, it’s still true:). I have nothing to lose by entertaining myself.

You're really wicked (in a good way),  FJ....LOL... Oh how fun it woul be if we men could do something like that (but hairy legs,LOL).

Alvin.
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Together - 20½ Years, Married 19 Years
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BD ("I don't love you"): Feb 2019, 
BD2 ("I don't want to fix this marriage."... D filed May 2020
Kids (at time of BD): G19,G18,G14,G12,S5

*** Every person on the planet is like you - a human being, most likely doing the best they can. Some are just more in control of themself than others ***
*** There are things you control and things you can't control, but what you can control is your attitude towards things you can't control. ***
*** You're not going to master the rest of your life in one day. So relax. Master the present day. Then just keep doing that every day. ***
*** Without trust fear is the only possibility. Place your trust in your own wings. ***

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Alvin!  Yes, the hairy legs get in the way;)
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Happy Birthday SS!

Just got caught up and your comment regarding her version of when she arrived in the country, is common for the MLCer.  Dont forget that they lose pockets of time in their mind.   She probably really did believe that she "just arrived"  ::)
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Thanks Les, Alvin & FJ  :)

Les: Not a chance.... lies thru omission. W is manipulative and very smart, but generally isn't a liar...... she's totally good with misleading and leaving things out though.  ::)

I heard from W today. This cycling back towards and then away is so very predictable. Leave her alone long enough and she comes sniffing around.
Today she wanted to know what was going on, and once again brought up going hiking together. She even called it "a date".
Do I believe it? Well, I believe she means it at the time..... and then she'll cycle away again.
Checking, checking. checking...... checking to see if I'm there.
She even offered to cook.  ???
Of course this sends up red flags to me. Good follows bad, and bad follows good.

She claims she was sick for days and that has kept her from going to her mom's.  ::)
She says her trip has not gone at all according to her plan, but that it has been good for clearing her mind and sorting things out (whatever that means).
Not my circus, not my monkeys. I continue to be kind and patient...... and yes hopeful. Nothing I can do to really help the situation, but I try to pave the way. I hope this is not enabling her, but when she returns I'm ready to place some boundaries and expectations..... not an iron fist, but it will be a push. I haven't pushed her yet, so this will be a learning experience. Baby steps so as not to spook her. Maybe I can get a tiny amount of growth and open up some better communication. Intuition says it's time. Gently but firmly.

Oh!! Of course!! ME!!
I'm doing great! Just crossed into the teens on body fat, I've lost another 6 lbs and only three away from my initial goal  8)
Now that I'm almost there, I realize my guesstimate was wrong and I need to lose more. So, another 20lbs added to my goal and then I'll see if I'm near where I really want to be: 10% body fat, totally ripped, with an awesome 8 pack (assuming I have 8 and not 6...... genetics, some have 8 and some have 6. I hope I have 8);)

Chiseling away....

One day at a time,

-SS
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Aw Standing most women don't care about 6 packs.  I think men do.

Lean and mean is better.

Just like women are not so into men's legs. 
I nice chest and some nice arms and shoulders are WAY more attractive to us.
Just a lady tip.  lol


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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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What do you think about this?

I'm perplexed. Hopeful (trying not to be), but perplexed.

Journaling..... this is going to be semi-long......

Last I had heard from W, she wanted to go on "a date" with me.... maybe hiking or a cabin or something. I didn't think too much of it. Cycle close, cycle away. No surprises.

Today she calls, and we end up talking for an hour and forty-five min. Longest conversation in a long time.
She sounds normal, and talks about her trip: How she's been using the time to "figure things out". OK, that's good. Cook baby cook.
She goes into a fear she had about being alone, meaning if something happened to me what would happen. She explains that she went directly from living with her dad to being married to me, and she's been curious and afraid about standing on her own. "Could she do it?". She's never really cooked for herself, and I take care of a lot of things (grocery shopping, etc.) and she didn't know what that would be like. So she's been doing all those things these past three weeks. I asked her what she's learned...... she says "I like having some space to myself, but I don't like being alone", "being left with her thoughts is difficult". Ok, that's a fair. She also says she doesn't know if she likes to cook, but she likes knowing she can feed herself, and wants to learn how to cook more. Ok, also good.

She had her IC yesterday, and she lets me know they were talking about MC.  :-X I asked if the IC says it's time.... and according to W, it is and the IC thinks it's a good idea. That makes me nervous but I have to say, I'm really looking forward to MC if it's time. W explains the goal is to start off with small things and work our way to the really big problems. Learn how to communicate and what each of us needs and expects from the other....... well this sounds good. Try not to get your hopes up SS.......

Then she talks about thinking about who she is, and discovering who she is.... that her trip has let her focus on this and she has a lot to tell me..... and that she wants to talk, in person. She brings up the date again, and we talk about it. We end up with a plan to stay at a hot springs for two nights the weekend after she gets back. She wants to relax, talk, play board games, go hiking, and cook together. Wow. Ok SS, don't get your hopes up.

Then she talks about fixing up the backyard and making a place for us to relax and get away from being inside.... that we need to spend time together. She's right, and yes I like the idea (a lot).

Sooooooo..... she wants to learn to communicate. She thinks she's worked on herself a lot but she's not done. She's not in a rush to fix "us" and seems to want to do it "right". She wants to go slow and have help in doing it.

Very confusing. On one hand, she's still in crisis. This makes me think of...... oh I forget what her name is on youtube...... Blonde Bombshell? She made a V-log of her MLC and halfway thru it she wanted to work with her hubby. I'll look it up:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNgCBKzBRE8&t=286s

So, I'd like to be optimistic...... I'd like to believe "oh look! There's light!". Oh how I would love that. Oh how I WANT that. Is that the case? Unknown. I'm on guard though.
Even IF all this is on the level, there's a lot to work out. I'm not afraid of that, and it won't be easy.

Perplexed. It's going to be an interesting August.

One day at a time,

-SS
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Standing,

Here’s my two cents on marriage counseling.  Last July my H seemed to be doing better in counseling.  He started to come home from counseling telling me that his counselor told him it may be time to start MC.  I was hesitant to start because my H still had not faced himself.  There was no remorse, no empathy and I was confused on why his counselor would want to start MC.  I decided to give it a go.  (Many people on here warned me about MC when your spouse doesn’t seem ready). I thought I had nothing to lose.  Well, needless to say MC was a disaster.  The counselor would shake her head in disbelief on what my H would say.  He never took ownership of anything.  We went for about 5 sessions and then quit. ( I actually got the benefit of learning some new communication skills).

Shorter version I am now in the camp that believes MC is a waste of time and $ for someone in crisis.  I firmly believe my H was not even forthcoming with his IC the whole time he went.  He quit after 6 months because he felt he didn’t need it anymore? 

This crisis is not about your marriage. It’s not about you, it’s about what your W is going through.  I think marriage counseling made my situation worse.  H did a big backslide and still does if I show any negative or sorrowful emotions.  If you do go, go without any expectations.  You also will hear things from your wife that you may not want to hear.  My H told me that if I had paid more attention to him he wouldn’t have had the affair.  Both the counselor and I called him on this.

My H wanted to go to MC so he could blame our marriage for his problems. When it wasn’t working he wanted to quit.  It was funny the other day he said he wanted to go back to marriage counseling if he could find a therapist that would only deal with our future not our past 🤔 I said good luck finding one of those! 

Do what you feel is right, but don’t let her blame your marriage for her problems. 

My two cents!
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BD #1 Spring 2016
BD #2 Winter 2017
married 33 years.  Together 35
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"My H wanted to go to MC so he could blame our marriage for his problems."

Meaning get the MC to agree with her there is no hope.  So then they can feel justified they were right.

Standing over the years I have been here I have to completely agree with roo.

After a year into their crisis they are just not ready to face up to the fact that their the problem, it is NOT a marriage problem.

Communication is not the problem either.
I hate, hate, hate to be so negative about this Standing.  I know you are cautious and not buying into this, but it does elevate expectations.

If you do decide to go to marriage counseling fine, just let them know you are there to learn how to communicate better..but the minute you see blame coming your way, just say...wait...this is not constructive to our communication problem.
We should not be playing the blame game, we have both made mistakes.  We are here to learn how to communicate better, so lets do that.

Standing I've thought for a while your W may be one of the MLCer's who may come out of this but she needs time to sort herself out.
That is going to take a lot of inner work from her, which maybe she is starting to do.  Maybe.

Just don't allow the blame game to start.  Cut if off.  That is not what you are there for.
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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SS I will share this fwiw. My wife also suggested we should “date” and even after a couple of times said “wow this is so much better, now this is what I was looking for.” That is right before she completely swerved away and told me i was repugnant and repulsive.

One year in she started to become more “herself” and said a lot of similar things. She started using “we” and “us” and “our home” and let’s do x and do y. I didn’t really take it too seriously but went along. She even started acting almost 75% of her old self day to day. She was going to therapy and we would have these kind of “long talks.” But they were always about her and her feelings and her discoveries (this was a red flag even then). But I listened.

So right after that she showed up one day and when I asked if she wanted to go get dinner she simply said no because she wants a divorce and I can make weekend plans for myself. None of this ever was causal, none of it was a linear process. At the risk of being negative (and honestly I am NOT trying to be, I want to see you get through this, your W to do her work and you two back together) she isn’t cooking. She is still probably fracturing one year in. This may be VERY HARD to hear, and it’s NOT meant to be discouraging. In a strange way if you can hold that idea in your mind it may be easier NOT to get pulled in, get your hopes up, then take damage that may not be reparable. It is counter intuitive but being more realistic and not buying it now may be much more useful to use in the longer timeframe of winning this war.

Maybe just meet her exactly where she is, but do not drop your guard and do not raise your hopes. Step forward when she does, step back the minute she does. Its not about not being friendly or being cold or not being open, its more about not falling in.

And listen my friend, I hope I am completely wrong. I hope she has suddenly figured herself out, and that she rapidly heals and reconnect. I would be full of joy and be so happy to be COMPLETELY WRONG. But everything i have seen, read, and understand says its not likely.

Stay strong, plan for the long haul, hold up your walls. It will protect you and your love and your marriage and in a strange way maybe even your wife.
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« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 06:20:18 PM by marvin4242 »

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Thank you Roo, T and Marvin  :D

Yeah, my skepticism is there...... there is plenty of reasons to be more than cautious here.
The timing seems way off, and there'd have to be a drastic change to leave replay (which is NOT evident at all to me).

So, I'll take it for what it is. Processing....... and hopefully there will be good processing inside it.
I know it can absolutely blow up, but it can do that on any given day.
What throws me is the desire on her part to go slow. That is different than racing to MC to validate a D. What's the angle? IS there an angle?Or just another distraction? (I'll vote distraction)

I think there is something to be learned here, what it is I'm not sure. Certainly an opportunity for observation.
I once again think about Blonde Bombshell and her videos. I had watched them with interest, to see a female MLC'er trying to document her experience. What was interesting was at one point, she chose to stay in her M but it was SUPER obvious that she was not done cooking from her videos. Then the "experience" of working on it with her H seemed to vanish and she was impersonating Marilyn Monroe, working out, getting plastic surgery and changing her career.
The interesting thing about this (for me) was the thought process. It seems like she's stalled out on her M, but she didn't run off and blow him up. Almost like "hey you, H.... you stand over here..... I'll be back after I fight off this aging thing  :o"). Poor guy. You can see his pain in one of the couples videos.
I've always wondered if an MLC'er can put their M on "ice" while they run thru whatever process their going thru.... to be "aware" enough not to destroy themselves, to have new red lines which they themselves won't cross. I guess in short, can an MLC'er choose to have a conscious while in MLC? That's a very interesting question to me. I think they absolutely CAN made decisions and stick to them, but it is rare. A question I ponder is: If they make a solid choice, does that make their other processing better/faster? In Bombshells case, she chose to stick with H but you see her going in a million other directions very rapidly. Is this happening because one of of her "questions" is answered? Freeing her to explore all the other "questions"? It's an interesting thought.

I totally think you're right Marvin..... perhaps fracturing. If anything, it somewhat appears the "personalities" are becoming stronger or maybe more solid (I can completely see what you're saying about 75%). The personalities last longer, memory is virtually complete, there seems to be movement "inside" personalities. For the "good" W persona that's great. What does it mean when monster reemerges? It will be stronger? That's not a pleasant thought, but I also know that this is very likely at some point (if not a certainty). With "good" W doing recon, "Monster" will have all the ammo she needs to get the job done. To me, one of the only paths thru that is strengthening "good W" so she is strong enough to fight (or be a big influence). Well, that's my theory anyway. Could be totally wrong, but what other choice is there?
Of course, she isn't the only one doing recon  ;) and I'm much stronger now than Monster will remember. 

My demand in all this is that IC continues during MC, and that the M is not the issue. We do need to learn to communicate. We do need to find common ground. We do have some big issues to deal with. I hope that the work to be "safe" continues to grow and produce a positive impact.
I stirred the pot in the beginning, and I think it was needed at the time. Then I handed that off to a professional, and I think that was needed at the time (and still). I know she's not graduated from that yet, I also think it's like an overeager kid wanting to ride a motorcycle when all they know is a pedal bike with training wheels. How to deal with that? Not sure yet.... but the motorcycle is a two seater, at least there's that.

One day at a time,

-SS
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Lots of wise advice here, Standing.
I'd suggest that in addition to being a little sceptical as you say you are, you are also honest with yourself about the likely fact that you may have some hopeful expectations. Which is normal of course but may not be so useful if that makes sense.

Even my nutty vanisher lol had a moment when he suggested MC....I think it was about a year or so in too....I was pretty sceptical and did not jump into action at all. But said I would go along with it if he did the leg work to arrange it. A few weeks of emails followed with info about various different types of MC as options. I participated enough to say when asked which I preferred or didn't. He made an appointment. Four days before the appointment, he stopped communicating, completely radio silent. I turned up for the first appointment; he didn't  ::)....and MC was never mentioned again. He filed about two months later iirc. On a positive note, the MC turned out to be a pretty good IC for me for a few months  :)

Quote
But they were always about her and her feelings and her discoveries
Reading stories here, I've often thought that the simplest way to see where MLC folks are is how Me-Me they are and how much empathy they show for anyone affected by their behaviour.

It doesn't sound as if your wife asked you much about your perspective or what you wanted. It doesn't sound as if she said much about how others like her family might feel when she didn't visit but she did talk a lot about what she thought, felt and wanted. There may have been parts of the conversation you didn't share of course, but what you did sounded pretty Me-Me and not much noticeable empathy for how others might have been affected? Even simple things like 'gosh, Standing, I left you alone for your birthday and as I realised I don't like being alone, I realised I'd left you alone'' or 'this covid situation must be very difficult for my mother and I haven't been very supportive' or 'I'm sorry that I have spent quite a lot of money down here'....even tbh a 'what would you like to do' about that trip away as opposed to a list of how she wants to hike and play board games....

And imho they were some odd flags while she was away that don't seem to fit what she says.....the restaurant visits, the on and off of the location app, the amount of money she spent, her avoiding her family....idk if your w is telling the truth, but I do know that MLCers lie a lot  ::)

Going back to my xh, he never once asked how I was....or what I needed....or how I felt. Not once, it was all about him. One can have compassion and understanding that things like depression do tend to make people self-centred for a while....no different when I had PTSD tbh, the pain sucks up your attention I think.....but MC requires some balance and reciprocity.

So my advice is to detach a bit more, look at how entitled and empathic she is or isn't, and use that to manage your boundaries and expectations.
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« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 10:49:12 PM by Treasur »
T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

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Hi Standing,

I think it's perfectly normal to feel bit worried on this sitch - as change of status quo is always a risk.  There's a 50/50 change it can swing either way.  But in order for new status quo to born you two must walk through this.

Your W wants to take this step. She can take the step (of going into MC) with you or without you.  And she has chosen to do it with you.  So that is plenty of reason to feel positive.  Whether or not MC is about saving the marriage or making a "consious splitting" (such an ugly phrase) is up to her. 

All you can take care is your side of the street.  Just go in there with curious mindset and you'll do well.  And let her work her side.   

You know this stuff.

Alvin.
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« Last Edit: July 29, 2020, 12:00:42 AM by AlvinTheMaker »
Together - 20½ Years, Married 19 Years
Me: 43, W: 41 (Acts 20-25) - a low energy live-in wallower
BD ("I don't love you"): Feb 2019, 
BD2 ("I don't want to fix this marriage."... D filed May 2020
Kids (at time of BD): G19,G18,G14,G12,S5

*** Every person on the planet is like you - a human being, most likely doing the best they can. Some are just more in control of themself than others ***
*** There are things you control and things you can't control, but what you can control is your attitude towards things you can't control. ***
*** You're not going to master the rest of your life in one day. So relax. Master the present day. Then just keep doing that every day. ***
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If anything, it somewhat appears the "personalities" are becoming stronger or maybe more solid (I can completely see what you're saying about 75%). The personalities last longer, memory is virtually complete, there seems to be movement "inside" personalities. For the "good" W persona that's great. What does it mean when monster reemerges? It will be stronger? That's not a pleasant thought, but I also know that this is very likely at some point (if not a certainty). With "good" W doing recon, "Monster" will have all the ammo she needs to get the job done. To me, one of the only paths thru that is strengthening "good W" so she is strong enough to fight (or be a big influence). Well, that's my theory anyway. Could be totally wrong, but what other choice is there?

From everything I have studied and observed the closest model is think of a kaleidoscope if you will. There are facets of the old person all shattered and rearranged and shifting. Some of the worse elements which exist in all of us (and for some is very strong to begin with) may come more to the surface. Occasionally as the kaleidoscope turns you will see little snippets of the old self, distorted through a bent looking glass. So it looks familiar but its not the real thing. I think these are the times we feel they are connecting or coming closer. But kaleidoscope will keep turning until there is something fundamental internally they can latch on to begin healing or reassembling. Problem is we keep seeing fragments of the person we knew through the lens. Keep in mind we will by nature try to look for that person, which one of us wouldn't? So we see that "more" than everything else, and maybe even excuse the rest as "cooking."

They are simply coping any way they can moment to moment, day by day, with not much access to empathy or registering of the emotions and wants of others. It is what the human psyche does in highly traumatized states. Its survival mode of the mind if you will. It's like blood shifting away from extremities to the core to protect vital organs.

But the truth is its a lot of mirage and illusion until they really start reassembling (coming out of the tunnel if you will). I think trick for most standers is to make sure they don't keep hurting themselves when they see these mirages pop up. Yes I know its easier said than done, I know I have some of the scars and burn marks and I was pretty aware of what was going on. Even that isn't the perfect protection.
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Quote
From everything I have studied and observed the closest model is think of a kaleidoscope if you will. There are facets of the old person all shattered and rearranged and shifting. Some of the worse elements which exist in all of us (and for some is very strong to begin with) may come more to the surface. Occasionally as the kaleidoscope turns you will see little snippets of the old self, distorted through a bent looking glass.

That's rather spooky, Marvin.
I recall vividly a conversation with my then h, maybe about 6 months or so in sitting in a park, when he suddenly said out of nowhere "I'm a different person now. Well, maybe not completely different....more like a kaleidoscope when some bits have moved up and some bits back." I had no idea what he was talking about of course. I can't remember what I said, probably not much, just listened. But I remember it so vividly so it must have struck me as significant in some way at the time. And at that time I had no idea that I was dealing with anything other than 'just' a depressed husband who was asking me to not give up on him bc he was doing all he could to get well. And of course I had no idea how much worse things were going to get.
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T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

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HAHAHAHAHAHAHHA,

Maybe growth, maybe processing, maybe nothing.

I had my very 1st OM dream.   ???

Yeah, what is that? Well.... it's a little silly but I should write it down just so it's journaled and never lost.

So I dream that W is out and about doing whatever she does, and I'm doing my own thing (as usual). Disconnected. Then I get a text with a picture of a car I don't recognize.  ???
Then another picture, then another picture. The door open. The interior of the car. So I get concerned, and race to where the car is (a hotel I can make out in the background). I get there and spy the car headed away and follow it to the airport. My only thought: She's in trouble. I'm on a motorcycle (how? I don't drive a motorcycle)..... Com'on it's a dream!! LOL!!!

Get to the airport and I'm searching for W. I'm thinking she's been kidnapped or something. Somehow Prince is with me (??) and is backing me up..... (I'm not a Price fan and I doubt a 5 foot skinny guy is going to be any use). Eventually I find W and she's with an 8 foot tall, sleeved tattoo, facial piercing guy. Complete with backwards baseball cap and baggy clothes. Total looser. I laugh and think to myself "WOW, they really do trade down don't they?" (yes I think this). I walk up and say "HI..... who are you?". W has a shocked look on her face. He says I'm bla-bla-bla (nervous) and I say "who is this?" and point to W. His eyes light up and says "this is the most wonderful person in the world... bla-bla-bla.... and we're so in love..... bla-bla-bla.....". I laugh and say "Oh..... you mean my wife?". He replies "wut? nah...... are you..... nahhhhh". My reply is "time to go", and walk away. W is professing all her feelings of love and nothing can keep them apart.... then 8 foot monster gets uglier and aggressive with me and I turn into ticked off hubby..... beat the crap out of 8-foot monster, no problem. After that, Price was running around worried that we can messed up the place and wanted to clean it before the cops arrived.  :o

Very weird, but hey, that's processing. I don't even know what happened to W after I beat him up...... I ended up on the motorcycle driving away with W's other sister (one that does not exist in real life and who sent me the pictures in the dream).  ;D :o :P :-X

Alright Freud, where are you?

One day at a time,

-SS
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Ha ha ha ha Standing, dreams can be weird.  I'm just glad you beat the dude up!
Little Prince probably wasn't going to be of much help...but nice he helped clean up.   ;D
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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"The wheels on the bus go round and round.... round and round....... the wheels on the bus go......."

Journaling.......

W finally arrived at her mom's house late yesterday afternoon/evening. That's good. No call or anything to let me know (not a surprise).  ::)

I have been on a roll with exercise!! 14 miles walked today, and started putting together my weightlifting routine.   ;D ;D ;D
So very excited.
The call of the cheeseburger is the hardest thing to ignore: Every time I finished walking I hear the call of the cheeseburger...... "SS..... come.... EAT ME!!!!". LOL!!!
All I have to do is think of the calories and grams of fat & carbs, and I run home to my water and protein shakes.  :P
Tonight though... I answered the call...... by cooking my own using 97% lean hamburger and a low calorie/carb tortilla for a bun!!! It was sooooooo good!!!!
1/2 lb of meat, onion, spicy mustard and two slices of Velveeta (low calorie) and low calorie popcorn instead of fries. It was amazing. 500 calories for the whole thing.

W called tonight on video...... was it to see how I was doing? Nope. It never is. LOL!! She looked so tired and run down. Poor thing. No, she called me to let me know she'll be staying an extra week so she can spend time with her mom. Well, that's ok. I think it's good she does that. I told her what's going on in my life, and then asked her to tell me something. She went on a long rant about her job....... and it was interesting. She's completely disillusioned about work, finds no joy in it.  She's having trouble with her boss, and he is going to be very unhappy she's going to be out another week. She knows she can't change jobs during COVID and also knows she can't get another job that pays as much anyway. She says she's stuck. No motivation to do anything, no happiness.
She looks at me and sees I'm on fire and a success at everything I'm working on, and attributes that to "me being a man, and everything is easier if you're a man........ you get everything handed to you".  ???
Well, I work darn hard to succeed and it has nothing to do with me being a man. I work in a female dominated environment, and I had to turn heads to win them over.
Then she went over all her accomplishments and how they are all for nothing at her job. I suggested that learning how to do these things builds to something bigger, better and actually fulfilling........ she says "I know you believe that..... the eternal optimist.......... sometimes that is really annoying".
Well, my poor W........ oh to work together on something of value...... I hope and pray, someday.
I don't know if this is selfish or not..... I would so love for her to be a housewife. This stress and hustle of the corporate world is not good for her (it never has been). She just goes goes goes, and shakes herself to pieces. It would be so good just to have her be herself. I know that is impossible now, but I would be happy with a simple life of me bring home the bacon and her just to be carefree and......... still. For her to know peace.
Oh to have a helper, and not someone who just needs help.


So I have an extra week alone!! More time to work on this body and turn it into a SEXY BEAST  :P 8) ;D

Always a thread of silver in the lining.

One day at a time,

-SS
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Standing, or even if she moved to part time it might really help.  Especially if it were more of a “hobby” job that she enjoyed.  It would give her purpose, but not be overwhelming. 

Without kids (even with kids), staying home without an outlet might not help the depression, but exasperate it.  Just a thought.
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Standing, or even if she moved to part time it might really help.  Especially if it were more of a “hobby” job that she enjoyed.  It would give her purpose, but not be overwhelming. 

Without kids (even with kids), staying home without an outlet might not help the depression, but exasperate it.  Just a thought.

I agree with FJ....When you are on the other side (working hard), the grass on the other side (of being full time housewife/dad) seems greener than it might be in real life.

No doubt this is one of the "big mistakes" STBXW  made (and I was his partner in crime).... You know the drill.  Let her make the decisions about her life, and just cheer when she makes it good, and be there and listen when she fails.

Alvin.
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Together - 20½ Years, Married 19 Years
Me: 43, W: 41 (Acts 20-25) - a low energy live-in wallower
BD ("I don't love you"): Feb 2019, 
BD2 ("I don't want to fix this marriage."... D filed May 2020
Kids (at time of BD): G19,G18,G14,G12,S5

*** Every person on the planet is like you - a human being, most likely doing the best they can. Some are just more in control of themself than others ***
*** There are things you control and things you can't control, but what you can control is your attitude towards things you can't control. ***
*** You're not going to master the rest of your life in one day. So relax. Master the present day. Then just keep doing that every day. ***
*** Without trust fear is the only possibility. Place your trust in your own wings. ***

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That's a REALLY good idea FJ  :D
Like that idea a lot. Will keep that in the back pocket to suggest at some time (if that time ever comes).

Yeah Alvin, not interjecting in her life. Just supporting and being patient (and listening).

Seems to be on the downhill slope still, just clawing on a ledge at the moment. Poor thing.
I could totally see her getting to the point of not caring at all and just letting all that go. Wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, maybe even something that needs to happen to break her addiction to work running her life.

-SS
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The running and mania behavior is in full swing.......

Journaling:

I didn't think I'd have anything to add for a week or so (that seems to be the schedule currently), but no....... our MLC'ers are on their own schedule  ;)

Today I get a text: "I send you five messages in messenger and some pictures.... what you you think?".
I open up the app and sure enough there's 5 in there..... Hmmmmm.... are they old? Nope, she waited a whole 7 min for me to respond and then begun texting to get my attention.  ::)

She's found a house she wants to possibly buy in the other country.  ???
It's giant, and is themed like a castle.  :o
Yes, complete with high walls, turrets, a guard house, swimming pool, and a central tower. Are you kidding me?
Yeah we could afford it (I couldn't believe the price: Low)...... but what are we going to do with that?
She's convinced she can sell her stuff to get it, and then she'd buy it (her, not us).
She hasn't even seen the inside yet........ fantasy and escape.

[sigh]

The madness continues. Glad I'm as detached as I am.

One day at a time,

-SS
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Oh Standing, yup mania at it's finest.  I'm sorry.  They do cycle a lot, may just be a whim of hers today.  It may be something else tomorrow.

I guess just try to ignore it or downplay it...maybe say...yes, it's nice but what would we do with a big house like that?  Are "you" thinking of buying it?

What would that mean for your job Standing?
Can she really afford it on her own? 
Without knowing the particulars, maybe no more money should be sent to her until she comes home.

Oh boy...these MLCer's, huh?   ::)  A cra cra bunch.
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She wants to buy a house that looks like castle in a foreign country :o :o :o???

Okey, just when I thought stories cannot get any weirder, they do  ;D

Has she even thought the bureacracy involved in it?  Say something like tax-implications (the house can be cheap, but tax might not - especially if she doesn't have local/dual citicenship)... these things are way more complicated than "I saw something pretty and it's cheap and I'm gonna buy it now").

Alvin.
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Together - 20½ Years, Married 19 Years
Me: 43, W: 41 (Acts 20-25) - a low energy live-in wallower
BD ("I don't love you"): Feb 2019, 
BD2 ("I don't want to fix this marriage."... D filed May 2020
Kids (at time of BD): G19,G18,G14,G12,S5

*** Every person on the planet is like you - a human being, most likely doing the best they can. Some are just more in control of themself than others ***
*** There are things you control and things you can't control, but what you can control is your attitude towards things you can't control. ***
*** You're not going to master the rest of your life in one day. So relax. Master the present day. Then just keep doing that every day. ***
*** Without trust fear is the only possibility. Place your trust in your own wings. ***

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She wants to buy a house that looks like castle in a foreign country :o :o :o???

Okey, just when I thought stories cannot get any weirder, they do  ;D

Has she even thought the bureacracy involved in it?  Say something like tax-implications (the house can be cheap, but tax might not - especially if she doesn't have local/dual citicenship)... these things are way more complicated than "I saw something pretty and it's cheap and I'm gonna buy it now").

Alvin.

Alvin, why are you bringing so much logic to her idea?  ::)

Ah, I wanna have a vacation in La La Land!  ;D
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BD - Jan 17, 2020

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She wants to buy a house that looks like castle in a foreign country :o :o :o???

LOL Standing you just can't make up this stuff if you tried.   :o
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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How are you coping Standing?  Anxiety or taking it in stride.  She seems to be going further into the tunnel.
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

m
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SS: yup its real, you have to believe it.

Thunder: my wife bought a 90 year old farmhouse that has not been occupied in around 30, no roof, no electricity, no indoor plumbing, and no road to it. In a foreign country. And she can’t receive any packages.

Yup not surprised.
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Thank you Marvin, FJ, T, Les and Alvin.....

Yes I'm doing ok FJ, thanks for asking  :D (sent you a PM too)  8)

So I was a little wrong, I though the two pictures were of the same place, it's actually two different homes.  :o
One is a castle, the other one is like a....... I'm not sure....... a Mediterranean villa? Both are huge and multi-story.

It all makes sense to me (in a twisted way).... she has asked the last three years when I retire and since BD I realized this was an insurance policy to fund her new life if she chose to break away.
If she can get a home down there, all she has to do is get by long enough to have me retire (it's a state pension) and she can grab her share and live indefinitely down there in relative luxury.
Makes me sick to think about that, but she's no dummy. Very smart woman. And with these "no fault" divorce laws here in the USA, it doesn't matter what she does to cause a D. She can do anything and still grab a HUGE chunk of my retirement, when I haven't done anything wrong. I had always worked hard to provide for both of us (together) and if this happens, then she is in great shape and I don't have enough to actually retire (which is so wrong, that was my work, time and life to earn) whereas she never paid into her retirement (even though I told her it was a good thing to do). All she has is stock in the company she works for, and she can cash that out anytime (or is mandatory at separation from the company). I also realize right now that it conveniently is about the exact value of the properties she's looking at.
Like I said, a very smart woman.

One day at a time,

-SS

 
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W - 40
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BD - 27th April 2019

F
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It’s wrong on so many levels.  I hope and pray she comes to her senses.  She does seem to have a motive that is very different from her original story.   :(
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Sorry to say so, Standing, but it sounds as if it might be time to start thinking how to protect your finances....have you taken L advice?
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T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

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Hi Standing.

If your W does purchase a house somewhere, wouldn't that be considered marital property?  If she buys it while still married.

Also stocks in the company, is that not also considered marital assets?

Just curious.   :)

Have a good day, Standing.
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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Hi Standing Strong,

She is fueled by those thoughts of a new life. A new start. IDK if she is necessarily the divorcing type as I don't know her. Mine is not the divorcing type. Mine prefers her husband on standby to pick her up when she falls.

Mine went on her quest for that new life 1600 miles away, signed a lease, kids in school, left with the clothes on her back, no job, and eventually failed. What came back was a lot worse then what had left. So now part of me wishes she had succeeded in 2015.

Mine is a financial disaster so she blew her chances to get that new life and now she desperately clings to stay married, not out of love, but to survive and not face her demons.

Your wife sounds like she is in a better position financially at the moment. Maybe she will succeed and maybe she will fail. Who knows ?

Yes it is legally not fair to the LBS. The person who wants out from the marriage benefits for their misbehavior.

All you can do is protect yourself financially. If she extends the trip even further then it maybe a good time to establish some boundaries. I bailed mine out when she failed on her quest and it so was not worth it. Let her fail or succeed on her own. The crisis will still have to run its course whether she succeeds or fails.

There is no logic to their thinking. They are on the path of destruction and she will take you down in the process if you allow it. Not an easy endeavor this whole standing thing.  ::)

Enjoy your day
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Wow, this is pretty unbelievable.
I agree with the others that you may want to get your finances figured out sooner than later.

The reality is that your state pensions will likely grow dramatically over the next few years as you get to retirement.  This could represent $100k's increase in your pension value that she would lay claim to.
In Canada, you can obtain a legal separation that outlines the financial situation from a set day.  On that day all pensions, investments, assets and debts are valued and an agreed upon separation of those values is established at that set day.  Any growth (or loss of value) of assets in your name beyond that date are yours to keep.

This agreement does NOT mean that you are divorced.  It only means that you have agreed to a financial settlement that relates to a point when your relationship broke down. 
Don't let your assets continue to appreciate in value and allow her to keep capturing that additional asset appreciation.  I would definitely see a lawyer just to discuss the financial implications alone for where you live.  It could save you huge $$$$$$$$.
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« Last Edit: August 06, 2020, 09:15:57 AM by Northdad »

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Back to the regularly scheduled program.....  8)

Journaling.......

Have heard from W until last night, she send me "Hi's" on both of my phones. Interesting how when they want to talk they make sure to grab your attention. Once I responded, she didn't have anything to say. LOL!!

Had a co-worker commit suicide over the weekend..... depression magnified by COVID isolation. No one knew he was struggling so bad. Left behind a wife and two little children. Terrible waste. Very selfish to checkout like that. Only thinking of himself. Makes me mad. Very nice guy, but to hurt people he loves and is responsible for.... that's a coward's way out. I know it's deeper than that, but kids come 1st no matter what. Such a shame.

I received word from my landlord that W hasn't responded to his emails about renewing our lease. I couldn't remember if we had signed on back in May or not (I guess not). He wants us to renew for 2 years...... now this is going to be very interesting. For one, I know the lease hasn't been signed, and I couldn't remember signing one (because I didn't evidently) and that caused me some stress of "did she sign it without me?" and "if she did alone, could I be forced out?". Well, now I know that I wasn't crazy and didn't sign, but also that we are overdue and she will have to choose with my full knowledge if she's going to commit to staying her one or two more years (i.e. is she going to stay with me for one or two years). Very interesting. It'll be something to talk about this weekend on our getaway....... I'm expecting something major during our mini-vacation. Knowing if she's committing at all in some minor way will say a lot.

Saturday is the day, and then gone until Monday with no internet, no TV, no distractions. It will be very...... something.

In other news, lost a couple more pounds, restarted spin class last night (OMG doing spin with a mask on is torture!! My heart was beating so fast and hard from lack of oxygen, I thought it was going to pop out and flail about on the floor like a fish out of water). Tonight I do super aerobics for the 1st time. Switching in some variety to my daily walking to get the whole body involved. Phase 2!! Soon it'll be time for phase 3 and adding weights to the mix. The Arnold inside is about to burst out like the Incredible Hulk..... hopefully I don't turn green.

One day at a time,

-SS
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W - 40
M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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HI SS,

So sorry you are going through all of this. Just wanted to tell you we are with you !
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Together 12 yrs Married 5
5 kids 3- Step (21) (20) (18) Two together ( 8 ) (9)
BD1 March 2018 - I wish I could give you more of what you need
BD2 Aug 2018 - I want a divorce sent by text ILWYBNILWY

O/M Discovered Nov-18

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Ugh, that lease thing does not sound good at all....  Maybe it is one of those things that has been creating tension in your W?  She knows she needs to make a move, one way or another....

Hang in there.

Alvin.
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Together - 20½ Years, Married 19 Years
Me: 43, W: 41 (Acts 20-25) - a low energy live-in wallower
BD ("I don't love you"): Feb 2019, 
BD2 ("I don't want to fix this marriage."... D filed May 2020
Kids (at time of BD): G19,G18,G14,G12,S5

*** Every person on the planet is like you - a human being, most likely doing the best they can. Some are just more in control of themself than others ***
*** There are things you control and things you can't control, but what you can control is your attitude towards things you can't control. ***
*** You're not going to master the rest of your life in one day. So relax. Master the present day. Then just keep doing that every day. ***
*** Without trust fear is the only possibility. Place your trust in your own wings. ***

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It’s hard to say if the lease means anything.  They aren’t great about adulting....  It could be procrastination.

Also, if she does sign a lease with you I wouldn’t read too much into it.  We moved from TX to FL into a new home.  Three weeks later he was planning his escape.

On the other hand if she won’t sign the lease, then you will have more to go on. 
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Fascinating......

Journaling:

Went on our two night excursion, the 1st we've done since it all began.
Picked her up at the airport and we were off.

The place was really nice. Very quiet and cozy. Lots of hummingbirds everywhere.
We soaked in the hot springs the 1st night. She noticed my weight loss, and was very surprised at how much  8) .
Lots of good stuff that 1st night. Very pleasant but both being very careful with each other.

The next day we did fun stuff, took it easy, visited art galleries and she picked something out.
At one point, she grabbed my hand and held it... only for a min, but that was nice. Good time interacting (almost like learning to interact..... maybe).

Then that night came, and we were going to play board games. We played three games of chess, and had a ton of fun. I won 2, she won 1. Lots fun. Lots of laughs. I really missed that.
Then she wanted to play Jinga. So I set it up, and she says "lets make it so when you pull out a piece you either share something or can ask a question".
Ah ha!!! Here is the big reveal. She has my full attention.
So we play a few rounds and begin sharing. Then the questions start. We never finish the game and just talk for hours.
Here's where it gets VERY interesting...... and a bit confusing for me. She goes off the MLC reservation (I'll explain).
We end up using the Jinga wood blocks for visual aids.... and build a timeline of her life. All the major events, all the drama, everything. Then we go over each one. She can identify each even from her past (before M) and how that has effected her, and that this is a separate issue to our M (which has it's own, different, issues).  Wow., This is very much off the path. She is totally aware, and admits she is working on these things, and they have nothing to do with M.
I'm shocked, but in a good way. Then we get into our M issues and we both own up on what we did wrong. I did plenty wrong, and so did she. We both apologized and she also apologized about how she has treated me this last year and a half (the R talks) and fully takes accountability for not being able to handle herself. She says she's still working on "her stuff" but that she isn't crazy. At 1st I'm thinking "this is MLC script" but I continue to listen, and even now it's making more sense. Could it be facade? Yes. Is it possible she has split the two things and she is really trying to deal with her issues? Also yes. If this is the case, then what would she feel like? Well, it would be like what she's saying. Trying to deal with issues which are identified and having people think she's nuts while she's doing it. She admits in the beginning she didn't know the "other stuff" was affecting things but that her IC has helped in a major way to separate it all.

It's starting to click with me.
My blinders prevent me from seeing what she is saying (my MLC blinders). This doesn't mean I'm accepting everything, and I'm questioning her at every turn. She explains the best she can, but it's difficult and frustrating to her. She's still working out her issues, so that's a work in progress. I know I must be patient..... I need to not only listen but I need to HEAR.
Still, she sees what is wrong and she knows there is confusion.
I have to admit, I'm very proud of her.... and I really admire her strength. How hard that must be..... and she's keeping herself in check. 1st time ever.
She tells me her perspective, and I tell her mine. It's harder for her to hear mine but we put so much of the table, it's incredible.

In the end, I understand her better..... and I hope she understands me better too.
It's not a fix. There is no resolution, nor should there be one expected at this point. It's a possible start. I hope it is.
There are still so many questions, and still ALL the problems to work out..... but it's a start. Communication and understanding. A start.

What's next? No idea. I feel like it's uncharted water..... but I thank God for what it is.

We drive back and are going to try a home exercise program together. Has to begin somewhere.

One day at a time,

-SS
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W - 40
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No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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Hello,

Just a quick note that the two night excursion sounded great. You went slow to go slower and seems that you had a few breakthroughs.

Quote
Has to begin somewhere.

That's the start of or continuation of all journeys. Continue to move forward.

[[[[[Ready]]]]
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"Always look in the mirror and love what you see."

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All good stuff, Standing.

Maybe that time away did help her some.
I'm glad you are staying open and listening with no expectations.

PERFECT!

I hope you two can have some more fun times together.  I personally think that is part of the key.  Just some down times to enjoy things together without the heavy talks.
I'm glad she noticed your weight loss...keep going.   ;)

Yup one day at a time.
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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Journaling:

Slow, slow, slow..... slow goes the show.  :)

After our good trip, we had a "normal" day the next day...... actually better than normal. We played a video game together, and then watched a few TV shows. It was very nice...... UNTIL he jumped up at 9:30pm and disappeared as we were finishing another show. I thought she had gone to the bathroom..... half hour later I figured it out, she wasn't coming back.  ::)
I played on my phone and then watched some other TV. She returned to bed a couple hours later..... I asked "what happened to you?" and her response was she needed to talk to her bestie....... and so [clap clap] for me, I didn't let it go and put down my 1st boundary ever: "I would appreciate it if you'd tell me you were done. I was waiting for you and had no idea that you weren't coming back". This threw her for a major loop.... and she got mad, but I stood firm. "What? I'm suppose to tell you where I'm going in my own house?!!?" she says.... and I calmly say no, that it's courtesy to say what is going on. She says the phone rang, I respond that I didn't hear it (I didn't), and that by my perspective she just got up and left. I thought she was in the bathroom and was waiting with the show on pause. She was not pleased, but said "ok"..... and there it is. This boundary has not been tested yet, but I'm sure it will be. I didn't set a repercussion to the behavior either, but I set an expectation. It's a start, and it's healthy. I would have just bit my lip earlier and sucked it up. Not anymore. Not again. She wants communication, she's going to get it, and all that comes along with it.

Cycle close and then cycle away. The last couple days have been cycling away, and that's alright.

Last night I went walking, then hit the grocery store...... she was at home alone for four hours (she loves that) and when I got home it was 8:30 (and she was hungry.... LOL!!). I go upstairs and say "want to help make dinner?". She says "no...... not really. I will if you want me to". In the past I would have said that's ok and just done it myself. Not this time. "Yes I want you to help" and hold out my hand for her to get out of bed. She groans, but gets up....... and she cooked hot dogs while I put all the food away. We go back upstairs, and I say "that's for helping cook", she corrects me "I did all the cooking!!". Why yes..... yes you did..... thank you.

Last night and today she binge watched all the Twilight movies  ::)
I had never seen any of them before, caught two and a half with her between working out and cooking. Wow, what a female teen drama it is...... cycle away. LOL!!!

One day at a time,

-SS
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« Last Edit: August 22, 2020, 03:33:16 PM by Standing Strong »
W - 40
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Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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Hi Standing,

These MLCer's cycle so much from one day to the next, you'll never be able to figure them out.  They are on their own time table that will make no sense to us mortal, normal human beings. 

She is still very early in her crisis.

Yes she should be courteous enough to let you know she was not coming back, but that is having expectations she would act and think normal.  You will be disappointed every time.  Just continue to watch your show and let her be.

Why give her any boundaries on how to act?  They don't follow them, they just think you are controlling them.  They will never understand a "being polite" boundary.  Their too self-centered for that right now.

I would just suggest, if you're hungry just make yourself something, without saying anything, and let her do for herself.  She's a grown woman who fed herself for the last 6 weeks.  She'll figure it out.

You're doing good Standing.  Just do you.

Keep building those Arnold muscles and enjoy your work-outs.  ;D
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« Last Edit: August 24, 2020, 01:34:11 AM by Thunder »
A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

F
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I think it depends on the MLCer and where they are at.  Boundaries have worked very well for my h.

He knows very well that I will follow through with the boundaries.  At first he tested, monstered and tried to control(many months ago), but ultimately he knows he has to play by the rules.
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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So far, that expectation has been working...... not perfect, but a good improvement. She for the most part announces where she is going or what she is doing..... not that that's the behavior that I asked for (I just wanted to know when she was done doing something with me) but I'll take it. It's more than what I asked for, and I haven't had to push for her to do it..... she's just doing it (mostly).

I have reciprocated, and have become more open about what I'm doing. She seems to enjoy this, especially when I announce I'm going to go walk and she's alone in the house.  :P She LOVES having a few hours to do whatever she does each day, and I'm happy to give that to her. I like my time alone too.

Starting next week she's going to stop working from home and return to her office. She's gotten over wearing a mask (no more panic attacks), so I'm happy she is improving on some level. Communication is improving, however being "let in" isn't on the table yet. She can talk to other people and laugh, and have a really good time (I've always liked her humor) but I can't access that yet. One of those defensive walls or something. It'll come down when it does, or not.

Today she restarted her IC, evidently she didn't do it while on her vacation..... which is NOT what my understanding was at the time  >:( but that's how it goes.

I had bought her some ice cream, and she's taken to coming to bed with a treat..... more calories for her. Wish I could eat that stuff, but no.... diet diet diet. While there is lots of fluctuation, I hit my lowest body fat reading ever the other day. That was very happy  ;D but still more to go. I don't know if W notices much, but she's looking a little more.... and always curious when I hit a new low. I'd like to think she wants to see what the end goal looks like, but there's no knowing. I will see the end goal, and stay there. Had no idea it was this hard or this much work, but I love it. Not a chore, a challenge!!

One day at a time,

-SS
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No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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Hello,

Quote
I didn't let it go and put down my 1st boundary ever: "I would appreciate it if you'd tell me you were done. I was waiting for you and had no idea that you weren't coming back". This threw her for a major loop.... and she got mad, but I stood firm.

I took my time and reflected on this boundary. First of all, it was your first boundary and you have to start somewhere. Finally, it was a boundary of mutual respect. If I was at your house watching the game, if I had to go, I would let you know. I just wouldn't walk away. You were both watching a show. She got up, it would not be too hard to say either, "I think I hear the phone, I'll be right back. or Go ahead and finish the show on your own."

I think sometimes we are too nice to our MLCers and they actually lose more respect for us. It is a careful dance and boundaries need to be  placed so they don't appear to be controlling. Your boundary is one of common courtesy and based on the situation was well placed and necessary.

Keep up the good work,

(((((Ready)))))



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"Always look in the mirror and love what you see."

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Been a few days.....

Journaling:

The expectation/boundary is holding..... W is much more open about what she's doing, which still is more than I asked for. This doesn't preclude her from skirting it by running away to be on the phone for hours and hours while I'm in the shower...... LOL!! If he's not available, no need to tell him anything...... HAHAHAH!!
That's ok with me. Just tell me when you're done being with me.

On another front, last night she told me goodnight instead of the other way around..... yes, an almost insignificant thing, but still a nibble more than nothing. She also moved to be in contact with me and didn't realize and move away. That was the 1st time in a really long time. Small, tiny contact, but us men notice these things and they do mean a lot (to us).

Beyond that, she talking about "the day she can leave her job" and yet throws herself into it so it takes up all her time  ::)
Somewhat looking forward to her going back to the office next week, and somewhat not. Plus and minus.

We got new phones yesterday, and I though she'd be more interested than she is  :o it turns out I'm the one super happy and finding out all about what it can do. Well, good for me!!

This diet sure has it's moments..... I've been thinking about pizza all week..... when I do, I go chug a protein shake. Almost to a new low on weight, tonight W and I will try our 1st workout together. That will be interesting  :)
Slowly, slowly, slowly rebuild trust, connection and communication. It really is a chore sometimes. Sometimes I don't want to do it, but it's work and it's moving towards something better.  So tedious, and time consuming, but I have things to work on with myself so that does make it better and easier. Give her some effort, and then move on to something else and let her be. No clue what she's processing, but she's pretty disconnected from everything that was important earlier in her MLC..... except her bestie. Once she gets married it'll be interesting to see that connection change. She won't have time for W like she does now. Or at least I think that's the case.  :-X

Slowly, slowly, slowly....

One day at a time,

-SS
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M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
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BD - 27th April 2019

t
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Quote
Beyond that, she talking about "the day she can leave her job" and yet throws herself into it so it takes up all her time  ::)

Seems to be typical of MLC that they have issues with their jobs.  I think the working a lot is a form of escapism.  My H said for years during his MLC how awful his job was, how he needed a change, really making me worried he was going to up and quit.  At the time I was a stay-at-home mom with two little kids.  The stress was unbelievable.  But his job was his enemy (nice I could share that with something).  Fast forward a few years - his job is no longer his enemy.  He never did quit (though he did switch places of work).  He still works too much, though.

MLCers seem to just be dissatisfied with everything. 
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Yup Trusting..... it's very interesting isn't it?
Just deflection I think. Your's didn't grow out of that? It's one of the things I really, REALLY want her to grow up and out of.


Journaling:

Well, that was quick..... I'm back again with a journal post  ;)

This has been a very strange (and nice) weekend......
W is (I think) doing a "trial run" with parts of her old life.
I'd been on the lookout for this for a really long time, and each time I thought maybe she was doing it.... nope. Just a lingering fragment making a quick appearance and disappearing again. Could be that again, but it's longer this time than before.

She vacuumed the 2nd floor yesterday  ;D That was nice.
Today she cleaned the floors on the 1st floor, and cleaned the kitchen  ;D She's on a roll!! I really do appreciate it. I've been taking care of everything since BD.
Even swept around the birds cages. It isn't that much, but it's so much more than she has done....... and it could all stop and be gone tomorrow, but today, it's nice.

Hit my lowest very on the scale again (YES!!!) and watched more TV with W... and played chess again with her yesterday (beat her bad twice, her head wasn't in it but she really wanted to play).
Last night I went to church again for the 1st time in half a year. It was FANTASTIC!! Loved it.
I let W know early in the day and told her she was invited. She ended up not going, but I could tell there was a huge conflict in her...... she wanted to go, but the MLC won out (not a surprise). I'm going again Wednesday night, can't wait.
W was VERY surprised I went, I think that rattled her a little.

We finally did out 1st workout together today. It was really fun, and extremely nice to do something together again.
Last night I got some laughs out of her again, and she is becoming more comfortable (or at least tolerable) with touch again. Yes, yes.... very slowly. Very slowly. Almost like petting a sloth..... or maybe a sloth petting you? Something like that.

Anyway, a successful weekend..... and I hope, but with no expectations. Never forgetting that a home run doesn't mean run run run.... it's just a walk to 1st base.

Well, thought I'd share a good experience.

Time to exercise again (for the 3rd time today).  8)

One day at a time,

-SS
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BD - 27th April 2019

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Thanks for sharing that with us, Standing.

Working out together and a few laughs today.  Hey it's better than nothing.
Sometimes these very small things add up over time, but just keep protecting your heart, Standing.  Still away to go.

You sound good!  :)
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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That’s nice Standing!  A win is a win:)
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Sounds like some positive things are happening, SS - both for you and for her - and most importantly, you are taking it all in stride. Your GAL skills are admirable, and I admire you greatly.
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t
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Quote
Yup Trusting..... it's very interesting isn't it?
Just deflection I think. Your's didn't grow out of that? It's one of the things I really, REALLY want her to grow up and out of.

It takes them forever to outgrow it in my experience.  My H has always been a workaholic and a perfectionist.  It is where he gets his validation.  Pre MLC and now again, he is able to prioritize better, especially with regards to the kids but he is still a workaholic.  Not sure he will ever be cured.  He did say once during the thick of his crisis that he had to keep busy or he would have to think.  Hmmmm.   The pandemic shutdown really threw him for a loop, not having the things to keep him busy.  Fortunately, our family (and house and yard) benefited from it. 
 
Quote
Last night I went to church again for the 1st time in half a year. It was FANTASTIC!! Loved it.

Still waiting here.  It would be nice to go again in person.
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Journaling:

A wonderful week..... best in a long, long time.
Work: Great (beyond great actually)
W: (Considering it's her) Great

Had my IC yesterday, and he wants to wind down..... saying there's nothing wrong with me and that I've changed so much since starting over a year ago.
So we are mving to bi-weekly for a while, later once a month. Interesting.

W has been pretty good.... actually pretty darn good.... until today (LOL!!!!). I exercised this morning, then spent time with her and cooked brunch (very good, I like to cook), watched a TV show together and then she fell asleep. She needs rest, and she was out for a couple hours. Then I went to go walk again before church tonight. As I was about to leave (she had just woken up) I let her know and she replies that she will be working out. Ah...... ok...... You want to do our workout? Yup, but go ahead and walk (something smells fishy to me), so I ask when and I will be back and we can work out together (she is a little snarky with "we're to do it every day"). Well, she wasn't sure if she wouldn't be too sore to do it earlier and was wishy-washy. So I tell her I'd be back at 5:00 and we can workout and then I'd go to church. Enough time for everything. She says ok.
I was 15min late, my 2nd walk took longer than I thought, but I get home and she's not working out, she's not ready to work out..... she's in front of her printer, super angry and frustrated. Ahhhhhh ok....... Well I had promised to help, and she begins to vent. I help. She is not happy and talks about how much she doesn't like working on this. Well, it's her dream and I'm not going to be responsible for it but I'm happy to help. She gets more angry. I help her get thru some steps and find out we need a long #1 Philips screwdriver. We don't have one. So I say "want to go to the hardware store?"..... "well, we have to don't we? she replies. Sheesh, what an ungrateful woman..... but we go and I'm in good cheer. 1st store doesn't have it. She angry. 2nd store doesn't have it and I get the whole "nothing ever goes right for me!!!!" routine. Sure it doesn't..... you only have someone next to you who goes with you thru EVERYTHING. So ungrateful. She's so mad she almost gets in a wreck in the parking lot.
Just like a child throwing a tantrum.
The tantrum doesn't stop once we get home, and she went into the MBR and closed the door (1st time in a really long time).
Just like a child.

Well you go ahead and pout, I have plenty of good and productive things to do.

One day at a time,

-SS
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M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
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BD - 27th April 2019

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Standing,

Let me ask you a progress question?  One year ago would your W have gone to the store to get what she needed? How many stores would she have gone too before giving up?
How long would she have allowed herself to feel that anger or frustration before seeking an escape?

Is she tolerating difficult emotions for longer periods of time? Is she trying more than once despite failures and set backs?

If she is that’s emotional growth and resilience.

It’s quite frustrating to feel like you are an I noticed part of the equation..... and when you look at what you expected vs what your getting it’s easy to be hurt and discouraged.

But you could also chose to look at W letting you be privy to her feelings, her failures, her struggles and that is pretty vulnerable.

Maybe it wasn’t a set back at all.....maybe it was a moment of intimacy where someone pulled back the veil and let you see all of them.....even if it wasn’t pretty or nice or particularly attractive.

It sounds like you both are making so much progress.....I am rooting for you guys.

Courage.
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Me 37
H 37
S15
Wallower/Chaos kid
EA discovered 3/31/2019
BD March 31 2019
EA ongoing? 🤷‍♀️ (Who knows?)
“God allows us to feel the frailty of human love so we’ll appreciate the strength of his.” C.S. Lewis

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Standing,

Let me ask you a progress question?  One year ago would your W have gone to the store to get what she needed? How many stores would she have gone too before giving up?
How long would she have allowed herself to feel that anger or frustration before seeking an escape?

Is she tolerating difficult emotions for longer periods of time? Is she trying more than once despite failures and set backs?

Courage.

Hahahahahah, it's funny you say that CH........ yes, her anger, frustration and complete lack of patience..... it's an amazing thing.
A year ago she would have gone to one store and that would be it (unless it was for work, then she'd go to every store on the planet).
Now days, she will go to two stores if I am present (this actually happened the other day), but when it comes down to it, she'll just buy everything online and have no disappointment. I can't imagine her ever buying groceries (LOL!!).

I would say she has improved in this area "by one tooth shade" which is to say, very little..... but it is something (or just my imagination).  ;)

-SS
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Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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Journaling:

Another week gone by...... good things, neutral things, and a little  :o ::) thrown in there too.  :)

I had to struggle with her to sign a new lease..... no fighting, just prodding. Finally got it done this morning. Reminding, reminding, and she'd just clam up and NOT want to do it (without saying so). Avoid, avoid, avoid, delay, delay, delay. Yeah I know, it's grown-up stuff but we have to have a place to live.  ::)

My tire blew out on the way home from walking. I haven't changed a tire since I was a teen...... but I thought "Ah ha, here's an important moment and we can solve this together". So I call up W and ask for a second pair of eyes. She drives to where I am and we fix it together. I really enjoyed that, and appreciated her helping me (and I wanted her to be able to do something for me). We fixed it, and I was happy. W was indifferent but she did her part.
The really funny thing was, we got the spare on, and I said thank you and if my hands weren't so dirty I'd hug you...... she pulls out some cleaning wipes so I can clean my hands (oh boy, does this mean she wants one?), and as I finish cleaning my hands she jumps in the car so I can't hug her...... HAHAHHAHAHAHAH!!
Oh these MLC'ers.

Last night it was very cold, and she's putting blanket after blanket on her side...... and she's still freezing. I say "I can help warm you up", she looks at me (unimpressed) and goes "Urrmph!!!" (which means No). HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

Well, what can I say? It's a sad funny.

There has been moments (like when she's leaving for work) when she looks at me and pauses, like she's looking for a goodbye kiss (but I know better). That makes me hope that someday she'll really want one. I've been giving her a kiss on the forehead when she does something really good or considerate along with a little side hug (just to send the message that I'm there). Perhaps someday there'll be a response. It's very nonthreatening and without any overt expectation. Process away darling, I'm still here.

We've been doing exercise together every night still. That is going great. Of course she only cares about what it's doing for her, and each night afterward she wants me to look at her and see minor differences (LOL!!). The whole age thing is absolutely in her mind. She's worried like crazy about getting old.

On to me..... still working out and dieting. Sometimes three times a day (on good days).
I'm learning how you have to change it up at various points or the body stops responding. What a pain!!!
War of attrition, and I'm going to win the war.

As the year begins to melt away, I wonder if she will disappear for Christmas again. I should be hearing about that sometime soon.
I have a TON of leave I have to burn off. Would I go with her? Or enjoy another period of total quiet, exercise, and dieting?
Questions, questions......

One day at a time,

-SS
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BD - 27th April 2019

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And another week goes by....... maybe COVID has sped up time and space?  :D

This week I fulfilled a lifelong(? 15 year) dream of joining a marketing group that I had previously only acquired and collected information from.
Feels so good to finally be part of them. I'm going to a virtual conference with them in a couple months.  ;D
Very exciting!!

Life is so full of LIFE...... it's really nice.
I have a different conference (virtual) at the end of this month. Things are just stacking up, stacking up. Really happy, really busy, and none of it has to do with W. I'm thankful, and strong.

New shoes came in yesterday, I was able to get a little over 400 miles out of the last pair, but now they're hurting my feet. Going to be great walking and walking and walking once again (I was walking anyway, but could only hit 12 miles a day in those shoes instead of the desired 16-20).
Starting a separate workout series called "Body Beast", and W has been pretty good about working out together on the other series. We've done 6 or 7 sessions together now.
Today she's leaving for a work conference and will be gone thru Friday. Some peace for me, although she is showing some improvement (but still cycles back and forward).

The other night she says "you've lost a lot of weight"...... Hmmmmm, she finally noticed? Well, she's going to have more to think about going forward cause I'M NOT DONE!! Zeroing in on that 8 pack (if it a LOT of work and I STILL don't have them!! BAH!!  >:( ).
The only bad thing about working out so much: The cravings for food!! Wow they are strong. Eat eat eat!! The body screams out for food.
I bought a hot air popcorn popper and am hoping that low calorie popcorn will shut that up. We'll see.  :P

If I blink another week will go by......

One day at a time,

-SS

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W - 40
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BD - 27th April 2019

H
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SS,

Did you cancel your vacation?  Previously you mentioned that you were leaving soon after W returned from hers.

HD
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BD 9/29/19 (Moved out while I was away for weekend with no prior warning.  I was shocked)

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Hey HD,

Yeah, I was going to Florida for a fun conference and it was canceled by COVID.  >:(
But it's not the end of the world, it was rescheduled to a virtual conference at the end of this month, so I'm doing that one.

Next year (Assuming Las Vegas reopens), I'll go to a different super fun conference.  ;D

Maybe escape to an amusement park somewhere next fall.... oh how I look forward to that!  8)

This COVID..... I have tons of vacation time accrued and nowhere to go.

-SS
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No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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Standing just make sure you get enough protein and veggies, you need to keep your energy up.  That's a lot of walking there, Mister.   ;)
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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I had an interesting call yesterday, not saying it was MLC..... but it was  :o

We have people leave and sometimes get terminated where I work all the time. Personally I really don't like that.... I like to retain people forever, watch them grow and build connections with them.
Anyway..... I was helping someone who is in the process of being let go, and as I was helping her she opened up..... and I was trying to encourage her (she needed it).

She starts talking about her life, it's obvious the termination process has her rattled (as it would anyone), and as she opens up..... wow.
She just turned 31 (very attractive woman) and dumped her boyfriend of 12 years. *BOOM* She talks about questioning her life, asks what happened to her 20's, doesn't like were she is, what she's doing, and is questioning all her choices in life. She wants to settle down, have a family, and wonders why men won't commit.  :o

Well that was.... a lot.
I know that this is nothing special and that a lot of women go thru this thought process when they hit 30. She talks about worrying about getting old, and is afraid of turning 40. I know that is a normal thing too, but WOW.... to actually hear someone voice it.

It does make me wonder....... she's very attractive, so why not get married in your 20's? Why spend 12 years with someone (And I assume love him) but not marry? She lived with him, had a house with him, and five dogs. No marriage. That is very confusing and such a foreign concept to me.
Well, I wish her well...... for the most part she is a nice person (but she can be a beast to work with. Power Power Power..... which to me is a flag for insecurity and low self-esteem).

It makes me think (and believe) that mentor-ship for both young women and men is something desperately needed in our modern society.
Young men need mature (and good) men to help them understand life and make good decisions. I think young women are the same way (right?).
I have a young man on my team, early 20's..... newly married..... new baby..... lots of problems (youth). All the other members of my team are a bunch of men who are all older than I am to one extent or another..... each one tries to help and impart their experience to help him. Mentor-ship. Beautiful thing to watch happen naturally. It's the way things were meant to be. Now if we could all be assigned someone wise when we were young, the world would be a better place (we don't know it all, as much as we'd like to believe).

One day at a time,

-SS 
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BD - 27th April 2019

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I have occasionally found myself wondering if we have inadvertently created a swathe of man-children, Standing. Men without integrity or a sense of honour, without the kind of grit I suppose that I saw in men like my father. Men whose word was their bond, I suppose, who had a sense of manlihood that was deeper than a tattoo or a swanky job or a bit of manscaping lol. Instead of men who are like eternal boys looking for external affirmation, mummying and shiny toys  ::)

It has often been very comforting for me to see the thinking of some of the LBS men here and realised that it is not a universal thing lol. There are some very decent LBS men here who are fine quality human beings imho.  :)

Idk. My sense is that culturally we may have slowly evolved into being a much more narcissistic culture, for men and women alike, where we all get a bit lost in chasing the shiny things and undervaluing some of the things of life that perhaps really make for a good life well-lived with other humans.  ::) And that there may be a reason why depression and anxiety have sky-rocketed in most Western countries over the last decade or so.

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« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 05:36:55 AM by Treasur »
T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

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I agree with that Treasur.

The younger generation has a very different take on marriage today. I know two of my granddaughter's have been with their fiance's, one for 10 year (2 kids), the other for 4 years (I child).
They both have great relationships.

I asked the oldest if she doesn't want to get married.  "Oh some day, but we are in no hurry.   :o :o

Very different from when I was their age.   :-\
But they just think nothing of it.  Their all busy working, raising their kids..I don't get it myself.
But then divorces are not looked at the same way either.  We have sadly become a throw away society and maybe that's part of the reason they feel marriage is not that important.  Idk

Standing it's nice the older men are trying to mentor him.  I hope it helps him.
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

m
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SS: I don't think this is anything like MLC. Sometimes we start seeing everything through the lens we have had to live with. For example on another board someone accused me of suffering from MLC because I wouldn't agree with her viewpoint!

I think its actually healthy and normal to stop and question our experiences. Specially in certain arbitrary markers. Like for a lot of women the transition from 20s (fun! young! prime of life!) to 30s (what is this exactly?). These are false labels put on women by society, maybe because a long time ago childbearing or being a wife/mother was the only viable role. But in modern society sometimes I see younger women still fall into that trap. This is not the same as someone who wants a marriage and children, that is part of things we all plan. Its more as they watch around them they may have to pause and really seriously decide what is more important. For example my SIL took a long time and very measured approach and decide to have a child in her late 30's.

So I applaud this young woman in asking the questions. I really do believe if our spouses had the same capacity at that age they would probably had not ended up where they are now.
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I must admit that I wasn't interested in getting married in my twenties either. No big negative reason; it just wasn't part of my life plan. My h and me lived together for six years before he proposed and I said yes, but I was quite happy as I was. And ironically given an LBS perspective, it would have been financially safer for me (as I had no kids) if I had not said yes  ::).....I'm not sure I could fully recommend to it any young woman of my acquaintance who didn't want children tbh. Which feels a bit sad bc I liked being married actually, but it made me surprisingly vulnerable.

I do agree with Marvin though that not everything is an MLC thing. People have affairs, end marriages, run their lives poorly, have addictions and go adrift in all kinds of different ways and for different reasons. Not all crises are MLC type crises imho.
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« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 07:03:31 AM by Treasur »
T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

F
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I think it’s much easier to walk away now than it used to be.  As it has become more normal the pressure to stay in a marriage is much less.  The accountability to friends and family is not nearly the same as it used to be.

I agree with the narcissism.

Midlife crises have risen, they almost exclusively happen in western societies.  The focus is too me centric. 
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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FJ: I agree narcissism has risen, but its in all of society. Its form individuals to social policy to a "me me me" and rights and money focused worldview.

But some of it really is we now see what is happening more. There were no MLC websites 20 years ago. Does that mean people didn't have MLC? Obviously not it was just viewed as something else.

Also I think that in western societies money and possessions have replaced any examination of meaning and personal values. In addition to FOO issues which I believe are the bedrock of MLC or other psychological crises later in life there is the whole chasing a mirage elements. Nothing external can ever lead to true happiness and contentment in my opinion. And part of the final MLC collapse is that exact question: are we actually true to ourselves and understand what is important to us as an individual?
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   I'd like to take this a step further. The shinny things have all come at a cost. Wether it's time with family, friends or self. That the two spouse income has put a heavy toll on what we see as important. Our kids have become forgotten and seen as objects or things that people were just supposed to do. I grew up a latchkey kid. I am literally heart broken for my own children as we had it all and my wife was able to be home all the time. How will all of this affect them? My wife has literally run around and said she would never get maried again and none of our kids should get married either.


  I guess what I am saying is we have set an example for our children that chasing the shinny object isn't better or more important  than raising our children to be fine young adults. I am in no way knocking working families. You have to do what you have to do. But somewhere along the line it became more important for money and power than it was/is to take pride in your family. I grew up in a huge house with fancy cars and everything I could dream of. Except parents that didn't realize their child felt abandonded and now as an adult has abandonment issues. Could we have done without the house  the BMW, the porsche and the lotus ?

  I have made decisions recently that will hopefully change all of these outcomes. I decided not to move to Hawaii and take a job that I would never have seen my kids. They might not have ever had to work as adults and I am facing financial ruin but I still think it's the right decision for me. My kids love that I am home and I am stable. The fridge is empty sometimes and we eat pasta with butter alot but I am outside playing with the kids and spending a good amount of my time with them.

  Out of all of this I just hope and pray that they have beautiful and wonderful families of their own someday. I hope they will truly be able to experience the absolute joy and happiness  that it brings and when the time comes they make the best choice possible. Hopefully  I am able to give my guidence to them when they need it.
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Together 12 yrs Married 5
5 kids 3- Step (21) (20) (18) Two together ( 8 ) (9)
BD1 March 2018 - I wish I could give you more of what you need
BD2 Aug 2018 - I want a divorce sent by text ILWYBNILWY

O/M Discovered Nov-18

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Father that’s really nice!!!  I think there is a ton of pressure on one income households because it’s hard to make it.  But with two income households there is not enough time in the day.  It’s tough.

I stayed home, but it did put a lot of pressure on our family for many years.  It’s a tough balance either way.
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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I must admit that I wasn't interested in getting married in my twenties either. No big negative reason; it just wasn't part of my life plan. My h and me lived together for six years before he proposed and I said yes, but I was quite happy as I was. And ironically given an LBS perspective, it would have been financially safer for me (as I had no kids) if I had not said yes  ::).....I'm not sure I could fully recommend to it any young woman of my acquaintance who didn't want children tbh. Which feels a bit sad bc I liked being married actually, but it made me surprisingly vulnerable.

I do agree with Marvin though that not everything is an MLC thing. People have affairs, end marriages, run their lives poorly, have addictions and go adrift in all kinds of different ways and for different reasons. Not all crises are MLC type crises imho.

Agreed on all counts. We were together ten years before marrying, and if we'd waited another five it would have made a ton of difference. As it was, I think the pressure of being together so long and others thinking it was time for us to "settle down" played too much of a role. The way I see it, you're ready when you're ready, IF you want to, and nothing else really factors in. Marrying at 26, I really missed the life I had before, and ended up having to babysit a guy that still didn't quite know what he wanted to do with his life, when I'd already figured out where I wanted to go (but ironically, compromised that because of the marriage). He was my best friend, but I think with five more years, we would have probably settled for the friendship and parted ways - which ultimately would have avoided a lot of crisis drama for me. Instead, we both ended up in crisis before 40. His crisis financially ruined me, where if we'd not been legally married, there could have been a cleaner break and far less fallout - probably for both of us. I applaud that 31 year old realizing that just because she'd invested a lot of time in a relationship didn't mean it was the right path. Better to figure that out now before it causes more damage (also agree with Marvin on that!).
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"Unconditional love is the highest of high standards, and while we are letting go of our need to control the process of anyone else, we are taking within our lives complete accountability for our own experience."

http://seriousvanity.com/how-to-cultivate-unconditional-love-and-change-the-world/

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I have made decisions recently that will hopefully change all of these outcomes. I decided  not to move to Hawaii and take a job that I would never have seen my kids. They might not have ever had to work as adults and I am facing financial ruin but I still think it's the right decision for me. My kids love that I am home and I am stable. The fridge is empty sometimes and we eat pasta with butter alot but I am outside playing with the kids and spending a good amount of my time with them.

I am truly sorry about the financial issues caused by your MLCer, there is no discounting that and it’s unfair. But I highly respect your decision. In my opinion the time you spend, the care, the love and nurturing is the key to them being happy and self aware adults, who WONT have MLCs and blow up other people’s lives. And have fulfilled ones for themselves. And will pass on that live and care to their children.

Trauma and unhappiness is like a virus, it spreads from person to person and from parent to child. To break that is a gift to the person and to society as a whole. Kids don’t remember the shiny things, they remember the time spent with caring adults.

Wow sorry about the hijack SS. maybe we should move this to it’s own thread?

SS how are you doing?
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Wow Father, that was beautiful and moving.  8)  Truly wonderful. Good man.

I had to laugh a little, I said "I wasn't saying this was MLC (the young lady)"..... just that it was very interesting.
No hijack Marvin  :D I love it when we all exchange ideas  ;D

For me (and this may be because of my upbringing), the upper limit of a courtship is two years. That's just me. Before I married, if I could tell this wasn't someone I could spend my life with: Two months and I'd break up (and no I never used women and threw them away - not a player). I did date W for 2 years before we wed, and that was my personal upper limit. If she hadn't wanted to marry then, that would have been it and we'd have parted ways. Never wanted to invest a ton of time into someone and then throw that investment into the trash (we all only have so much time).
Personally I believe (in my case) that marrying young did create a anchor that is difficult to break, and that has helped during her MLC. We both have lived longer married than we have lived otherwise, which is really cool when you think about it...... of course that also makes the prospect of MLC divorce even more heartbreaking right after BD...... but that's MLC for ya.

I do remember at the time (before getting married) of the young women out there not knowing what they wanted, being very fickle, and doing (what I thought) were very bad choices/decisions. I know that in the here and now (early 40's) most of them (by a wide margin) are alone (either D'ed or forever single). Many of them are hostile to men. This is very sad to me. I know that once upon a time, they could have chose a really good man easily (a few of them could have picked me up), now they can't (and many don't understand why, and that makes them really angry/sad). I modeled my desire/recipe for marriage after the old people (and mentors) I had at church: Marry young, marry for life, be devoted, love with all your heart, grow together. It's a recipe that works, it's an old recipe and not in style anymore (wasn't even in style when I was young, LOL!!), but it's beautiful. I can 100% say that at the time (when I was young) there were more young men who wanted that recipe than the ladies. As time went on though, the men I knew drifted away from that and the ladies drifted closer to it (the desire for M). Also in the here and now, those men (and the ones I've met later in life) are bitter, resentful, and much more self-centered. Less and less marriage-material. Why this is, I'm not sure. Accumulated damage? Realization that the "ideal" is not obtainable anymore? Or perhaps missing the period of growing/maturing without someone next to you? Maybe its part of all those things.

So when I say it's interesting that this young lady is facing these things here at her 31 year mark...... it is interesting, and a bit sad (to me). What men are left for her at this point? Her 20's are gone. I'm sure she had a good time (seems like it) but now it seems she's asking "what else is there?", she voiced desires for a family. I know that more and more people are having families in their 30's (And even 40's) now days...... but kids are a game for the young (IMO). Who wants to be 60 with the kids just getting out of HS?
The reality is marriage is trading life for life, and commitment for commitment. I knew this very young...... and I also had to face the reality of "what's left" after I was BD'ed........ what do I have to offer at this point in life should I be forcibly D'ed? I have a lot of things to offer, and many things are the best they've ever been in my life (because of hard work) but the reality is: I'm not in my 20's anymore either. I can't kid myself. The world has changed. People have changed. All are damaged in their 40's. All have baggage. Is there still an ideal at this point? Or just "good enough" or "something is better than nothing"? Real questions. I know the vast majority of people who are single at my work (and the same general age category) subscribe to one or both of these ideas. Desperate to find someone (anyone?).
To me, this is not ideal...... and I'm an idealist and a romantic. Is it looking for true love, or is it salvage?
Perhaps this is the final tragedy of the LBS, or perhaps the last real hope for those people of bad decisions. Generally speaking, the LBS's here are wonderful, beautiful people..... Far above the general dating pool (if you ask me), because they have not been part of that rat-race. When women say (and I hear it ALL the time at work) "Where have the good men gone?", well.... some of us do reappear, though not by choice. Conversely if I was single, I'd be asking where all the good women are..... they were hard enough to find the 1st time around.

-SS   
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Journaling:

What a nice weekend so far.

W came back from her business trip (no contact from her while she was gone - no surprise)..... but she has been more of herself since getting back.
Told me all about her tri in great detail. Wishing me to be safe while going for walks. Working on little projects like she used to instead of just camping out in front of the TV. Smiling. Laughing (even at my comments - a little). A little more appreciative. And most of all, NOT blowing up an any little thing.

Means something, or nothing...... but keep cooking sweetheart. I'm still here....... but its time to exercise, see ya later. LOL!!

Poor thing, this morning however she woke up (4am?) and wanted to know if it was Monday..... I said no, it's Sunday. She was totally confused and started rattling off all her meetings for the day...... I said "it's Sunday"...... and she sternly told me she's on the phone  ::) :P :o  No you're not........ "What do you mean it's Sunday?" I told her she's not working, she has a whole day to not work. "Is it Saturday?", no sweetheart it's Sunday. She was overjoyed and went back to sleep.

Poor thing. The stress.

One day at a time,

-SS
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Journaling:

Another week goes by.

Time sure flies when you're having fun  ;D

Not too much different with me, I'm doing great....... W on the other hand..... interesting.
I've seen more of her in the last week.... I mean the "her" is used to know. In a moment or two she had that "Twinkle" which was been missing. That life life in her eyes which had been missing. She's been laughing, joking (a little) and has been pretty open about her life.
Still, there's lots of struggle in her, and I leave her alone most of the time.
I don't think she's been doing IC since she got back. I think it's normal for them to take breaks, and I'm not pushing, probing, or questioning. She's processing, and that's enough.
Learning how to push her in a new ways..... last night she was mad and pouting about me not being home when she got home (she wanted to work out). So I had to push her to come work out with me....... to her credit, she did, and felt much better afterward. This wanting to do something but lacking motivation, it's a new challenge but an improvement over no motivation, no desire, no want, no will. Little steps at a time. Baby steps.

I have to go on the road for two days starting in a little bit. I was curious if she'd tell me bye, or just run out the door without saying a word. I got up early this morning and made French toast and turkey bacon for us. She normally doesn't eat well in the morning, and I won't be here to cook...... she was surprised and ate. Then later she knocked on my door to say "bye and be careful" (she's telling me to be careful a lot lately, also something that had disappeared and has returned). I instantly grabbed her and gave her a big hug, and she hugged back.

Very slow, just one bit at a time...... and it's helped tremendously that I'm dong my own thing without scrapping her off. Unlimited improvement is also a big factor (IMO). I can't say it's rebuilding, but I'm treating it as such: Working together, communication, being kind, thoughtful, and giving tons of time.
The last two months as seem the hiding phone being eliminated. She tells me about everything she does. It seems like finally she's able to somewhat relax again.
Progress..... with so much more to go.

One day at a time,

-SS
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C
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SS, I feel like the more I read, the more I see that reconnection and rebuilding are maybe even harder than the earlier stages. I guess that does fit with some of the HB articles. Those articles talk about how the early stages are where lessons are learned and the later stages are where we are tested on how well we’ve learned the lessons of our journeys. Seems like you are striking that balance between detachment/independence and still showing her that you’re there.

My W and I aren’t at that stage yet but a lot of the interactions are the same, I think - the only difference is that where you are in this process, I feel like you can initiate contact and shared activities more. For me, where my W is in this, I try to err on the side of giving space and letting her be the one to suggest shared activities. But it sure seems like you are doing all the right things.
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Another week goes by (sheesh, it goes so fast!!)

Have to journal, had a wonderful weekend.

W has been procrastinating like crazy, and it's affected my workouts on more than a couple days this week  ::)
Like Saturday: I got up early (like normal) and walked 12 miles.... morning to mid-day. It was great! Was on the cusp of breaking my personal record and was so close to doing what I consider a "perfect day" for the very 1st time (which is to walk 20 miles in one day, my current record is 17).
So I figured "This will be easy!! I'll just knock out 8 on the second walk of the day and *BAM* that'll be 20!!". Well, it didn't happen.
I got home and W said she wanted to work out together (good) and then drug her feet all day. In the end there was no second walk, and we didn't work out either. LOL!! That's ok. She means it in a moment, but can't muster the energy sometimes. Still, it was a nice day and we had some time together. She is going thru an obsessive period of making bracelets (to focus her mind I think).

Sunday however was magical. I got up, did  miles, and when I got home..... W was working on her printer. Oh wow. Here is the project we were to do together and has given her such consternation for so long. I drop what I'm doing and help. We work on it together for four hours. Took that monster apart, replaced a part and put it all back together. In the end...... it wasn't fixed. LOL!! The part wasn't what was wrong, but we succeed in doing something together and that was very good. W had multiple breakdowns and afterward she was in a good mood. We learned a lot together and now can work on it more together. Time to buy more parts for the next round.

After that, she sat down at the piano and played for three hours. She was happy, and I sat and listened the whole time. She interacted with the birds in a normal and really positive way (maybe the 1st time) and I could tell she wanted someone to listen.... so I did. Appreciation, or just not being alone? Who knows. It was really nice. So much damage inside her, I hope she's untangling her knots.

Had to write it down before I lost the details.  8)

One day at a time,

-SS
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Anyone ever notice an acceleration of cycles and if they mean anything?

My guess would be no, but it's very interesting to me. I'm almost confused by the rapid pace it's so fast now. Or is it that I've slowed down so much (and so busy) that I'm not registering time like I used to? No I think she's speeding up. The move forward and back is happening every couple days now. It was weeks or months before.

Journaling:

I've seen more and more of W lately (the "real" her). Then she retreats and needs time (which is given readily).
Lots of piano playing, even some sweet interaction with the birds.
Last night her sis came over with her kids. I had to fix a computer for them, and W was measuring our niece for pants (OMG, she's a giant..... special order pants her legs are so long).
Well, W did very well...... connected with the kids (as always) and visited for a few hours. After they left, she collapsed (like she used to). Still very draining for her. I noticed her looking to me all thru the visit. That hasn't happened in a very long time. My opinion matters? She wants my support? It's interesting.
Sometimes giving her a look back, sometimes not.

She also returned to IC this week, that was very nice. I don't think she had gone since her trip months ago.

Still, there's so far still to go..... and she's not out of replay. My worry was she'd be stuck here for a long time and just try to sweep under the rug. I'm happy that she's still trying to move, and I haven't had to push (not that I would have now anyway).

Just cut my daily calories again, and gotten used to it. The body likes to eat..... so lots of veggies and air-popped popcorn to make it feel full.
My walking has taken a decent hit to provide time to workout with W, but it's worth it. We're doing more together, but I'm careful to give her lots of time after each activity.

Slowly, slowly....

One day at a time,

-SS
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Hi SS:

So I am going to sound like I am being negative, but I am really not. And I will start by saying I hope I am very very wrong in what I am about to say.

Usually the cycling faster is an indication of change. People like to call it “going in or out of the tunnel.” The more clinical version is a high state of inner conflict and/or lack of emotional stability. When this increases it usually means there is change. Given the timeline it is very unlikely she is “coming out of” replay. It is more likely that she is trying harder and harder to cope, parts of her are in conflict and different facets of her psyche are appearing and receding faster.

Only reason I say this is NOT to in any get you down. Its more so you keep your guard UP. Sometimes they look like they are “connecting” or becoming more like their old selves, but its really random glimmer of a kaleidoscope that is not holding together anymore. FWIW my wife did something very similar around 1 year after first BD for 2 to 3 months. Then she fell apart even worse than the initial time.

And if this is not the case, then its great that she is seeing her IC. She may find a solid footing from which she can start addressing her inner issues.

By staying carefully detached and not trying to read tea leaves you are in best shape no matter what is going on.
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Marvin, thanks for pointing this out. I think that for many of us, even after we are largely detached from the emotional roller coaster, there is a tendency to stage-watch a little bit. Maybe this is mostly just true for the live-ins and the clingers, but I feel like even if we are less emotionally affected by their cycling, we are aware of it. I think the reminder that more rapid cycling is perhaps even more of an indication that the LBS needs to protect himself or herself against expectations even more than they do during quieter periods.

For me, the concept of “no expectations” feels a little bit vulnerable in the sense that my instinct is to put up a little bit of a wall and try to protect myself against the worst possible outcome. But it seems to me like “no expectations” is the key to being the lighthouse...the more rapidly MLCer is cycling, the more important it is for LBS to be steady, solid, safe...but also doing their own mirror work. MLCer may not immediately move toward the lighthouse, especially if they are in the depth of the tunnel. But if you’re steady, you improve the chance that they will see your steadiness and safety, and they will remember it when they are ready to leave the tunnel. And more importantly, “no expectations” is good for your peace of mind. I can’t say I always succeed, but I sure do try to remain neutral and friendly/pleasant as much as I can.
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Not negative at all Marvin  :D Thank you for the insight.
That actually lines up perfectly with what I'm thinking on the inside. Something tells me a choice is coming near the end of the year. What that means I have no idea, but I can guess that she will choose to blow up, or make it thru. Just intuition. HA!!! Even a choice to make it thru would probably be preceded with a blowup of some duration and intensity.

Not all roses either... while her sis and the kids were here, she was demonstrating workout moves to the kids.... at one point (trying to impress them) she talked about using a punching bag. We don't have one, nor does her gym (as far as I know) but she mentioned working out with a punching bag while on her trip.  ::)
Well, that will be dealt with some day.

-SS
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Standing I can't tell you how much I really SO admire you for listening to advise and not being defensive.
People here only want to share their similar experiences, in the hopes that in some way may help others avoid the pitfalls they encountered.
But every situation is different and I don't see you having any illusions, or rose colored glasses.

I am not sure what is happening to your wife, for all any of us knows she may just be in a midlife "transition" and not a full blown crisis.  It happens more with live in MLCers.

I think you are dealing with this the best you can, being kind, but still living your own life and doing things for yourself.  That is exactly what she needs!  Space and time.
I wish more people would realize the importance of this. 

Yay for you.  No pressure I truly think is the key.
 
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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Sheesh, another week has gone by? Really?

Journaling:

Finally got thru some big projects at work (excellent, I hope it slows down now), W continues to make small improvements (not perfect), and an earthshaker.

I lost my grandmother on Monday...... which is sad, bit also a relief. She had not been well for the last few years and needed a lot of care. It will be a lot of stress off for her children. Still...... she had always been there, and now for the 1st time, she won't. Sad, but relief. I think it's selfish just to want someone around when their quality of life isn't that good.
It was an interesting thing when I got the call. Numbing but not unexpected. You know it's coming someday and then that day arrives unannounced.
I told W....... we know they don't process death well...... well, she tried to console..... a little....... then disappeared into the bathroom to shower (leaving the house soon after, I think to escape thinking about it). Later that night she actually cooked...... once again her attempt to help or show some type of empathy. I could see it, and I appreciated it.

I had been wondering for a month or so if she would run off for Christmas again this year...... and while I still don't know, for the 1st time since her last trip, she was furiously studying her Spanish book all day Saturday. That's normally a sign she's gearing up to run away again. Not complaining. If she wants/needs to go escape..... then by all means. I get along fine by myself.

Talking continues to increase (some days) and laughing continues to increase (fewer days). A few days ago I made fun of her (a little, just a small rib) and she smiled and laughed..... that was significant. No way she'd have even gotten it before much less found any humor in it. Getting thru that it's ok to play has been something I haven't seen in years....... well, he's hoping that continues and is strengthened.
Same thing with communication, learning how to do it again...... the exchange of ideas. We're using TV shows we've been watching (how to get away with Murder) to try and figure out mysteries..... we take guesses and have fun seeing who's right. That's progress.

What I'm learning is to not be caught up in what was or what's happened, or any of that stuff. For now, there is only now. I've known the theory of that, but getting thru and applying it (getting over myself) now that takes time and effort. Absolutely not something that is instant, or a matter of willpower. A process. Right when you think it's being applied and you've got it...... there's more. Always more.

I find that giving time, not smothering, doing my own thing has been very positive....... but I really believe that reaching out (patiently) has also been the key to what positive steps are happening. She is starting to accept (slowly, oh so slowly) my attempts to reach out (as I have been since the start). I get the impression (maybe it's just me) that she expects me to clobber her with something if she opens up...... learning I'm safe not just to be around (that was accomplished a while back) but to be open with...... that is good, but what is she going thru.... who knows. She's not saying..... but teamwork on the most basic level is starting to reappear. Is it genuine? I think so. I don't get a feeling otherwise....... but there is frustration, disappointment, disillusion and the need to stay busy on her part..... still no real peace. Restlessness.
What a terrible place to be. An improvement on the hell I could see in her eyes from before, but the fires are burning so much lower now (but they are far from out).

Just observations.

Tonight we worked out together, and for the 1st time she stood next to me. Before it would be doing it together, but don't get too close or she'd be critical about if something was being done correctly. A little more ease, with me and maybe herself. Still a long way to go.
But there's positive, and to me that's all that matters. Sure so much that is wrong could be focused on, but what good does that do? Focus on what is bad or what is lacking....... it shows up in demeanor. Focus on parts that are good and that shows up in outlook, personality, and energy. Can't be faked. I think THAT is what helps, that is what's attractive, and that is what they want for themselves. Mine sure doesn't know how to get there, but if I had to guess..... she's looking. Trying to figure it out, held back by herself, but attempting to learn, slowly learning (thru much pain and unease).
Her laugh when I ribbed her reminded me why I'm standing....... I could (for a moment) really remember the woman I loved, the joy we had shared and the hope of what could be once again (and hopefully much better, deeper, and completely authentic).

Hope to get in 16 miles walking today. New lows on weight and body fat....... and STILL no six-pack!!!! ARRRRAAAGGGHHHH!!!! When will these blasted abs show up!!

One day at a time,

-SS

 
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And almost another week rolls by.....

Journaling.

Very interesting week. Some good, some not so good.

On the good...... earlier in the week she was being more open..... to the point that we had a few laughs. She was so focused on me one morning that she walked into a wall  ;D
That felt good. You should be able to attract or distract your spouse. Well, I haven't felt like I've been able to do that in a very long time. Gotta be pretty distracted to walk into a wall while staring at someone and smiling.

As with all things, these too come to an end.
Last night I came to bed and found W crying. She tried to hide it, but I asked her and she said "yes".
After asking what was wrong she asked "You don't know?"....... Um no. I don't.... tell me. This produced a long semi argument about why I don't know what is wrong and that I should just know (mind reading). I told her I'm not a mind reader, I don't want to be a mind reader, and that I want her to be up-front with me. She didn't like that at all. In time she finally opened up and it was a venting session (the 1st since she returned from her trip two months ago).
She let me know that she's in a bad place, and everything in her life is a mess. Everything.
Ahhhhhh, the need to blow off pressure. Tons of contradiction, and there's no fixing it.... so I listened...... pushed back in areas.... but mostly listened. Pointed out good things, which she couldn't "feel" and to her (in that moment) seemed like nothing good is happening. Her frustration is off the charts, but I could see her job stress is boiling over and consuming all parts of her perspective (at this moment). Job is everything for her, so as that falls apart yeah it will seem like everything is falling apart (to her).
In the end, she became frustrated and wanted to sleep...... crying some more as she dozed off.
Poor thing. Absolutely blind to all the good around her, unable to perceive. Yeah this moment will pass, but she's still locked in hopelessness. So tired of being broken, but still being broken...... wanting to deny it, actively denying it, and wanting to be treated like nothing is wrong with her while at the same time
complaining that everything IS wrong.  :o

Well, that's the LBS and MLC'er life.
Now that the pressure has been let out, I hope she has a good day today.

She may opt out of my grandmothers funeral tomorrow. She became angry that I would (kindly IMO) release her from needing to be there..... that I would "give her permission" to do so. Hmmmmmm...... turning it into a "man thing, and she hates that". Well...... someone important dies in the family..... wouldn't you think there is an obligation to attend? Well. I was kind, and when I could see her struggling I gave her a way out. I wonder if she'll take it. I would say yes, but she has been surprising more lately.

Such a tormented soul.

One day at a time,

-SS
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Progress? Maybe. It is what it is.

Journaling:

Today was my Grandma's burial. Monday was the funeral...... W attended both!!

Monday:
The funeral was a mess (thank you Covid), but it didn't really bother me. Funerals have never bothered me.... the person is gone, not dead..... so unless you're worried about them, what's there to be sad about? Well, that's how I've always looked at it.
W took the day off (even after I gave her a way out.... and she really thought about taking it). Well, we took different cars so she could get back to work, but she went. I had to sit at the front with the other pallbearers and W was sitting all alone. I tried to get her to sit with my mom, and she was grumpy and in the "ho-hum" (sorry for myself) mood.... after a bit, my mom flagged her over and she joined the family (GOOD).
MLC'er don't do well with death, but she did her best.... I was very proud of her.

Today:
Burial day. W said she wasn't going (not a surprise) and then this morning.... she decided to go.  :D We ended up spending the day together and we got the the city an hour early...... I paid her back by suggesting we go shopping (which she leapt at). She bough more clothes (always wants new clothes) and I don't think she's really shopped since Covid started.... so that was very nice (an outdoor outlet mall). I think she really enjoyed it, I know I did.
The burial was a total wreck, just like the funeral (thanks again Covid)..... and then we ate together.
On the drive back to our home city, we talked.... it was fun..... and low and behold, she starts talking about stories of us dating. She remembered things I had forgot... and it made me laugh so hard. The MLC'er now able to remember things that I could not!! I huge shift from after BD when she couldn't remember anything.... ANYTHING!!
A few smiles, a few jokes from her. Little bits shining thru..... and now it's time to give her time, rest and space.

Always nice to get a really good day...... helps forget all the lackluster, neutral, or even bad days. I don't recall when the last really good day was, but it's been a while. Now I have a new good day to hold onto until the next one (whenever that is).

One day at a time,

-SS
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More movement..... lots more.

Journaling:

Another week passes, and so much (little things) have changed.
We continue to work out together, almost every night. W has become obsessed with improving her body, and wants observation and approval of her changes (well I don't mind.... lemme take a close look.... LOL). It has been a bonding of sorts, using heavier weights, doing longer exercise sessions. All positive.
It has helped her mood and stress to some extent at well, and provided something positive almost every day. That's good.
I make sure that after each time we do a double high-five (ten) to finish our accomplishment (OUR being the key word). Teamwork, to disprove the notion that we are not a team or can't be a team (I know some would disagree with this, but it's working).

There has been a very noticable change in her actions with our birds. Much more like she was before shadow period. That is encouraging. She's spending time with them, playing with them, talking with them...... and most of all, noticing them without having to have her attention drawn to them (now THAT is different). I still take care of them for the most part, but she's starting to get more active.

She's become very open about what she's doing, and even though she still hides out to work on her Spanish or building bracelets..... she comes afterward and checks in or lets me know what she's doing, or shows me what she's made. Lots and lots of alone time still needed, and that's ok. Doesn't hurt me one bit.

Appreciation: She is noticing some of the things I do around the house now..... and (sometimes) says "thank you". Doesn't mean she's willing to do it, but there is some noticing. After a year and a half of doing it all, she's starting to see/understand that I do things  :P ,

Then there's the biggie that really blew my mind..... her job. Her job is the center of her life, the most important thing. For years now she's been fighting with her co-workers (I couldn't be sure who was in the wrong - and I still don't). Well, the other night.... in passing she mentioned talking to one of these ladies. I was like "Who?" and she looked at me.... "Oh yeah, we're all getting along now", and just kept going in her story (like it was no big deal). Um, they were clawing at each other, ready to slit throats for years and now everything is fine?  :o
Then came another big one...... for years her company had wanted her to serve on the board. She has declined multiple times. Years ago (early shadow) she wanted that bad. As she went further in, she still wanted it (and worked hard for it) but said it was too much but the time they offered it.
Well, they are thinking of offering it again...... and now, for the 1st time, she's going to say yes. WOW!!
I mean, it shocked the heck out of me when she turned it down (maybe 5 years ago), and after that it wasn't a surprise as she was getting worse and worse.
Now she wants to do it, and is willing to say yes.
Big.

As for me: I'm on a tough diet. It's so lean, but I'm stalled out on weight loss. Building muscle, but not losing weight. That's very frustrating, but also not the end of the world. My walking has taken a beating being home to work out with W (I'm not complaining) so I chalk it up to that. 15 miles a week instead of 60 miles is a big difference harder diet or no.

All in all, a good week. She gets closer, then drifts away. I'm used to it. It's so rapid now, I don't even try to shift gears. Sometimes she seems to completely cycle within the day. Faster and faster. It's almost a blur at times, and I'm curious if it all just melds together into the new person or if something else will happen.
I'm not deluding myself into thinking she's in withdrawal or depression. She's in replay, but she's cooking for sure. Well, I'm not sure what is happening but I'm content to know that it'll make sense later.... I don't have to identify everything in real-time.  :D ;)

One day at a time,

-SS
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Another week goes by, another update to my journal......

I can't say I like or enjoy whatever step W is at the moment, so I'm taking up time with work, self-improvement, and projects. That is fun and beneficial.
At this time she is bored easily, is wanting distractions is on the increase, and she's cycling away somewhat (which is normal).

Covid wave 2 is here as expected, and with it an increase in stress for the family. I could care less but being accommodating to those who are really worried is something I'm sensitive to. Really I just want it to be over with. The holidays are in jeopardy, and it'd be very unfortunate to cancel Thanksgiving and Christmas.

I bought W her birthday present...... not sure if she'll like it or not. She's been spending so much time making jewelry........ so I got her a bunch of vintage Swarovski crystals/beads. I hope she'll really like it..... but you never know. She opened up a week ago and said when she makes jewelry that it's the only time her head isn't spinning/thinking. It's her escape (or one of them), and that's healthy. God knows reading and learning is mine.
With wave 2 Corona in effect, looks like there will be no escape vacation for her during the holidays, but I could be wrong.

I have two conferences (virtual) over the next couple weeks...... had been looking forward to traveling to these but there are no conferences anywhere in person anymore. Another one I wanted to attend early next year was just postponed to summer. I think all of them will do the same (or be canceled). Tough for the LBS to find an escape during this Covid, especially with a Live-In. I can go a long time, and even longer than I think.... but rest is important. I don't see any forthcoming for a long while. Getting that perspective that only a little distance provides is good. Well, it'll happen when it happens. Make the best with the hand you're dealt. Opportunity is abound.

Less than a week to the election too..... will be glad to have that in the rearview mirror. The phone rings constantly with polling places, automated messages, and texts from places that I have no idea how they got my #. Very annoying.
In this bubble of "normal" that a LBS maintains, it sure would be nice to have the outside world become a little more "normal".  :P

Well, another week in the can.
I wonder if there will be trick or treaters this year? I hope so.

One day at a time,

-SS
   
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You know, I read your post and noticed something, it’s just normal life mostly this week!  That’s great!!!  I am also so ready for the election to be over.  Have a great week Standing!!!
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Hi FJ  :)

You know, I think you're right...... it is just a "normal" week. Everything has become so routine, I guess it really is "normal" (but not).

The other day she was getting ready for work, and most mornings is fairly talkative..... wishes me a good day, that kinda stuff (big improvement).
Well, for whatever reason, it just seemed..... nice...... and also for whatever reason, I thought I'd get a kiss goodbye  :P . Maybe I just really wanted one (hasn't been one of those in.... well.... I can't remember). Funny how the things you want and barely remember just pop out of nowhere.
I didn't get one, probably won't get one for a very long time still....... but I have to say, it was a GOOD feeling. Not because I was let down, or felt left out or anything like that..... for a moment I wasn't void if that makes any sense.
One thing I've been a little (little) concerned about is: How do feelings come back? Do feelings come back? What is it like? Always hard to imagine, that part.
I always knew/assumed that there is a time for this, and it happens when it happens..... and that it would surprise.
Well, it did surprise. For a moment my heart would beat again, and want would return.
A little silly I know, but reassuring. I'm not dead on the inside. I have the ability to feel, it isn't all covered up by the need to distance, the need to protect, the need to supply and support. Me is still in there. How nice is that?
If we are a mirror (and we are), then that means she's in there too. A fleeting moment, but boy.... emotions are a powerful thing.

Was really happy to read your update. My how things change..... right?

-SS
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Standing!  I am in the exact same place.  Except, I do believe you are still in love with your wife.  I do not currently feel those feelings, though I recognize they are a choice, and only when it is safe can that choice be made.

Your post really defines the struggle. You putting your needs aside for her.  Maybe some day she will see the hurt, the pain she caused you and can make amends.  For so long they only see their own pain.   TBH, the idea of kissing my h makes my stomach cringe currently.  Which does make me wander if the damage he caused is too extensive.  The betrayal too deep.
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« Last Edit: October 31, 2020, 07:05:04 AM by Finding Joy »
Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Hey FJ  :D

Something you just said jumped out at me...... has those curiosity neurons pumping......

So the thought of kissing your H makes you cringe..... well, my W absolutely would cringe at the thought of kissing me (LOL!!).
I'm wondering if what we have here (in part) is the difference between women and men.
I mean, yeah there's been times thru this that I would not want to kiss W...... actually some big stretches..... but by and large, pucker up  :-*
HAAHAHAHAHHAHAHA

Listening to the LBS women here (and one person in particular) it's a big struggle to get over that hump and reach out (or accept the MLC'er's reach out).
While this is a generality and we are all different....... is it harder for a woman to cross that threshold?
W had shut this connection down during the shadow period, not wanting to reach out and I can almost imagine her saying (in little cartoon bubbles around her head) "Nope, nope, nope..... not safe, not want, keep away". I see the same thing in female LBS's on the other side of their H's MLC: The need for safely, the need for trust, the need of certainty. All understandable. I think the same applies to men LBS's too, but differently. I think we are more quick to cross that line, but I also think we are much less likely to really trust in the longer term whereas when a woman chooses to cross the line, forgive - then trust comes with it more easily than for a man. Different hurdles, same end goal, same end destination. Much harder hump to get over initially for women LBS's, and then easier. Easier initial hump for men LBS's but a harder trek to the end.

That's what it looks like from my vantage point here in the cheap seats.  ;)

What do you think?

-SS
 
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Possibly Standing.  I think most men just won’t wait long enough and then at a certain point they are done.  That is if the woman cheats/leaves. 

I think women are more apt to wait, see what happens.  You are submitting your will to Christ and I think it’s hard to tell the longterm effect on your heart.  It’s simple for me, if he were fully repented and submitted to Christ I would take him back, forgive him and move forward.  He is not.  He is not proclaiming his love or even desire for me.  It boils down to, he is about to lose his kids....  That’s it.

So to me circumstance matters.  Are they worthy of our trust, our heart.  Or are they unsafe.  I don’t want to be married to someone who returns and is halfhearted for me, because  I cannot just leave him next year without my kids and faith being an issue.

Women tend to want intimacy if their heart is there also.  So it is a sign for sure.  Your wife wanting that would be a good step!!  I remember the first 6 months after bd.  We were intimate 2x a week and went on a date 1x a week.  It was sort of to try and reconnect.  He did not like kissing because that was too intimate, but everything else was on the table ::).  Certainly at the time he was not participating for the sake of love.  So definitely different for men.
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« Last Edit: October 31, 2020, 10:21:01 AM by Finding Joy »
Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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A bit early for my weekly journal update, but something interesting to write down so it's not lost.......

W has been having terrible sleep the last few weeks, and with it, I have been having terrible sleep too!!
Normally I'm just a rock and can knock myself out really fast, but not the last couple weeks.  :(

Well, long story short: we all need sleep.
I had started taking melatonin and that helped for a while and now it doesn't seem to do anything.

Oh right, the interesting thing...... Yesterday W had to work part of the day, came home and fell asleep. Good!! She needs sleep. Well, when I found her (didn't know she was sleeping) there was a LOT of movement. She was kicking..... kicking in her sleep. Struggling with her arms, making noises. Didn't look restful at all. Well, I put my arm on her hip and patted her to wake her up gently. She jumped as she opened her eyes and was surprised.
Funny thing is, later she said it was the best sleep she's had in a while.  :o
I can't remember her ever kicking in her sleep. Noises, sure. A little movement, sure. Rapid kicking, pushing of arms...... never. What processing is going on in there?

The night before (more sleep stuff) she had gone down to do whatever she does in her office. A little before midnight she went to bed and I headed to bed right after. When I got there, she was a bundled up, lights off..... I looked at her and she's sniffling (obviously crying). I ask if she's ok..... she replies after a pause "yes". I say that she's upset...... she once again says she's ok. How odd, she had been in a good mood earlier in the evening. For the rest of the night, she cried, sniffled, tossed and turned..... hours and hours. No words, no opening up, and no sharing. Ok, you go ahead and do it all yourself...... not chasing like I used to. No prying open the soup can.

It's bad enough to observe hell from the outside, very glad to not know what it's like from the inside.

One day at a time,

-SS
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Oh yeah Standing, don't even go there.

My H used to fall asleep on the couch and I could see him frowning and looking...I don't know...mad, worried, scared...he would even hold his breathe for a minute. It was odd to watch.
Then his face would get all red. Now I know he had hot flashes because it would happen when he was awake too, but once in awhile I would gently wake him up because he looked like he was struggling with a nightmare or something.

He would wake up and be a little disoriented for a minute as I explain he looked like he was having a nightmare or something.  He would say, no..no nightmare, I don't even remember dreaming anything, but then he would start being a little defensive almost as if to say...it was none of my concern, so I just left him alone after that.

Maybe they fight their demons in their sleep.  ha ha

As far as her crying, who knows?  Sometimes I think their head is just a swarm of confusion and uncertainty and it just gets the best of them.
I know there were times I would come over and his eyes would be all puffy like he had been crying, but nope.."I'm fine."   ::)
Of course their not but they are not going to tell us.

You're doing good just leaving her be.
I hope your sleep improves, Standing.  All this does effect our sleep at times.

Are you still walking?  Going to the gym?
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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Hi T  :D

Less walking, but LOTS more hard cardio and lifting. It's really good.
Matter of fact, I have a little story about that (it makes me really happy)

Journaling:

The election is over (sorta...... LOL!!)...... W is back to her previous political views (good), but the election does upset her. She actually blamed me for the results for a moment  :o HAHAHAHAHAHHAHA.

Well, I have a lot to share, and I'm a bit tickled......
Still working out with W almost every night (very good), and I've been cleaning the garage to turn it into a gym  :D
Didn't know how W would respond to that idea, but instead of just doing what I want.... I included her. I showed her my work, told her my idea and asked her what her thoughts were. She went right along with it...... not because of me.... no no no.... she could see the value for her. That's ok, it suits me just fine too.  8)
So, full bore garage gym it is!! I'm very excited for this. I know I'll get a lot of good out of it, and if she joins long term.... that's icing on the cake.

So my big story....... I've lost a lot of weight (although I've stalled out and am just getting larger with muscle now - which is totally fine).
Today as I was cleaning the garage and my closet.... I came across my uniforms from the service (I've kept them all, including the very 1st one which was issued at basic training). Well, I was looking at that 1st uniform...... it has been a fantasy of mine to put it on once again..... to be in "Fighting Trim". Well, it was tight (always was) put I slipped right into it..... just like I was 19 again.  :D ;D 8) :P :-*
There's no way I'd have been able to wear it since I got out..... but here I was...... in it once again. Big accomplishment!! And yeah.... I looked good in it ;)
LOL!!!

I wore it until W got home, then showed up in front of her. She was a little surprised, and very coolly said "Oh, you can fit in it once again". Sheesh lady..... you're not raining on my parade!!  :P

Well, it was very nice. I'm quite happy tonight.

One day at a time,

-SS
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BD - 27th April 2019

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She may not have said it but I know all of us here know that is truly something. Not only does it show all your hard work and focus on yourself it also represents that you are living your life, taking care of yourself, making goals and achieving them and being true to yourself. Kind of the opposite of MLC!

Well done!

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Thanks Marvin  :D

Time for my weekly journal entry......

I'm seeing more positive out of W, but boy she's struggling with sleep issues. I know they have sleep trouble, but sheesh.... I have to feel sorry for her. Each morning she hits the snooze for a couple hours...... I wonder why she doesn't just set it later, but no..... she has her routine and won't swerve from it (LOL).
Tonight (and a lot lately) she passes out while we watch a show together. I just quietly slip away and turn off the lights..... hoping that she will get at least a little time and a little rest.

Today I was off for Veteran's Day...... I cleaned the kitchen really nice, and did some work around the house (it needed doing). As is normal now, she noticed it and make a point to find me and say thanks. Her love language is acts of kindness..... which means she wants useful work done. HAHAHAHHAHAHAHA!!
While I was flexing in the mirror as we went thru each others day..... and I could see she was taking an inventory on me. Bigger arms....... why is it always about the arms?  ::)

Just over a week until her 40'th B-day. That will be interesting.
Covid is on the rise, my family has essentially canceled Thanksgiving and Christmas.  :-\ How sad. Well, that's the world we're in at the moment..... but there are good things abound...... just have to find them and make use of them  :)
Canceled my gym membership today, and worked on transforming the garage into a gym. That will be so much better anyway. Always opportunity, always a silver lining.

One day at a time,

-SS
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BD - 27th April 2019

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Standing, sounds like a good week.   I really appreciate your perspective and approach with your MLC W.   I am now just over 3 months since BD and I am finally starting to transition from confusion, shock, and anger to a somewhat peaceful focus on my own journey.  Hope the 40th birthday celebration goes well and good luck with your gym transformation.
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Hi HF  :D

The first 3 months were the absolute worst (in my instance) but it took till about 6 months to really get it (myself) nailed down and 8 months to be at real peace.
It sounds like a lot, but it isn't. Time takes forever, and flies all at the same time.

You'll blink and find yourself a year into it.  :)

-SS
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Another week flies by, time for my journal update:

Journaling:

Only a couple days until W hits 40 (this Saturday).
Present is all wrapped and ready to go. I'm not sure if there will be a response to 40 (I'd imagine so), on the outside she's playing it cool (probably just avoiding). LOL!!
In other news, she is making her "normal" baby steps forward. Now she is becoming more concerned and attentive about what's going on with me. She seeks me out ever day to see what's happening in my world...... that's nice. Of course it's all just on the surface, nothing deep..... but it's improvement, slow, slow, slow, improvement.
My God sometimes this feels like it'll take forever (it could) but these feelings are rare and fleeting. MLC is such a teacher of patience.
Will the reward be worth it? I certainly hope so, and continue to believe it will be.
The other day my friend told me "sheesh, doesn't she understand you can get another girl who is amazing?". Well, that was nice of him to say, but it lacks the understanding of commitment. I promised, and that promise was forever. I still have a feeling that the end of the year is important but as it gets closer I find my hold of that understanding starting to slip. Maybe because Covid locking everything down again? Unknown.
I did find out my MIL is coming to visit again next year. That's very nice. I look forward to seeing her again. Ha!! I have new questions and observations I want to run on the post-MLC'er mind.

As for me, I'm still good. Almost in a vacuum right now: Locked down, working, improving. Time passes quickly in this void. Everything is interrupted...... no gym, sun sets too quickly to walk, can't really go anywhere, and the holidays are upon us (yet canceled). It's very odd. The things I did a year ago while still recovering from BD are not available. No Christmas events, no theater.... all the things which provided an escape or an opportunity for reconnection are not available this time around. I will have to be creative. Still, I'm optimistic. There is a silver lining in here somewhere, some method of turning it to an advantage..... just haven't found it yet..... but I'm restless. Something to overcome in the deep recesses of me, maybe that's the point.

Well, at least the garage gym will be done by the end of next week. That's an accomplishment. The beautiful clanging of weights will be heard, and the grunts of effort. That will also be very nice and a big accomplishment.

Com'on Saturday, I'm ready for you!!

One day at a time,

-SS 
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Small n' Quick Journal update  :D

Well, W's 40th B-day has come and gone. Her dream day was being lazy and dong nothing (shocked, shocked I tell ya  ;) )

I gave her the present a little while after she woke up. She liked the box I had put it in, and laughed at all the paper and strings packing the inside (I'm not a great wrapper or stuffer, but had done my best...... I was able to do a halfway passable bow on the outside).
Well, her gift had lots of pieces..... and it took her a while to open each one and look at it. It was all vintage beads, from the 50's, 60's 70's and 80's..... really pretty stuff. Not that I know much about all that, just did my best and guessed.
She started out excited and thought it was really pretty..... by the end I think she was bored...... but she tried to put on a good face. I think she was happy when she was finished and jumped on her phone the moment it was done. That's ok. I wasn't excepting anything else.
The rest of her day was moving slow, taking it easy, and waiting for people to call her. She's big about wanting to know people care about her..... and she did get a few calls from family.
It was absolutely twinged with sadness of some sort. As she unwrapped each set of beads, I explained what each group was and when it was made. We got to the 80's and she asks "the 80's is vintage?".... I smile and say "yes"...... she sadly smiles and in a low voice (almost a whisper) says "I'm vintage now".
Well.... yeah. It happens to us all. Wasting a lot of time in the 20's and 30's doesn't help either..... but that's a different discussion.  :)

Overall pleasant, there was no meltdowns, more like a resignation if I had to pick. Curious to see what the lasting implications will be, but time will tell.
Still believe that there will be a backlash against the unfairness of getting older at some point, but Covid has that all locked down for the moment.

One day at a time,

-SS
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W - 40
M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

H
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Great Job SS!

My W turned 40 last year and aging is definitely one of the key factors with her MLC.  Really appreciate your patience and compassion for your W which inspires me to do the same.  Continue to take things one day at a time.

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Thanks HF  :D

Weekly journal update:

The aftermath of W's 40th has been very..... good. Well, mostly.  :P
Very "normal"..... "normal" in a good "new normal" way. More smiles, more eye contact, more open, and a little laughter. All in all, nothing to complain about.
There has also been more working late (sporadic) but that's life.

She really seems to be noticing things that, I thought she had noticed before..... maybe she didn't or maybe she forgot and has re-noticed? Who knows..... doesn't matter.
I think a really big change is ease..... she is much more at ease (most of the time). Things that she would have gotten annoyed about the last 9 years (and blamed me) are much less..... not nonexistent, but much less. That's nice. I've been in the firing line for so long, it's almost odd to not be the center of blame.

Well, a question was answered today, and I'm not surprised: She's going to see her mom again. I thought it was very strange that there had been no mention about it at all from her these last few months, and as Thanksgiving drew close I thought "well, I guess she isn't going anywhere? Thank you Covid?".  :P :-X 8) :D
Today I get a text message (these are still very rare) and it say "I found a great deal on airfare". My response was positive: "I bet she'd love it (her mom), what about quarantine?". Last time she went this was a fiasco, and who knows what happened as she just disappeared and barely visited her mom. Well she responds "There isn't a quarantine at the moment, but I should probably do it". Ahhhh, that answers my question about how long she's thinking: At least three week visit, but I know better. I tell her if she wants to go, then go. What dates? I get no reply. LOL!!
Later that night, she comes home (tired but happy) and we talk about our days..... the trip comes up (This is funny.... these MLC'ers)...... and I ask about when it would be. She says this Saturday!! Oh wow, that was fast. I ask if she bought the ticket already (she was making it out like we would agree on this - but I knew better) yes (after a nervous pause) she had bought the ticket already. LOL!!  :P Funny to me anyway. I'm totally supportive, I can use a break and the time will be well spent by myself. No negative feelings on my side. I ask about the quarantine and she says "well, I should be able to just do that for a week, right? I'll know if I'm sick or not by then". I say yes (but I'm not buying it). "Is that enough time to see your mom?" I ask, she replies "barely". LOL!!
I ask when she'd be returning..... she says "a little before Christmas?".... and this is funny too..... she doesn't have a ticket for the return!! She's just winging it. Well, that's ok. To me it says it'll be like last time, and I'll be seeing her next year.
Of course there are questions, but you know.... I don't need to know. I hope she's safe, I hope she processes, I hope she gets a lot of time with her mom. All not under my control. Simple as that....... but I can use the time and be productive. What I choose is positive, and that IS under my control.

I make dinner before our workout and she mentions that she bought me a Christmas present, that it will arrive on Monday, and I can open it them (see how their mind works?). On one hand, it's a gift to make up for what's about to happen. Smooth things over. And the other hand it's a relief for missing Christmas "I've taken care of that". Fascinating how their minds work. Well, it doesn't bother me..... it's funny. A little sad, but funny. I could be wrong and she does run home before Christmas, but I really don't think so. SS will be frying solo for the holidays again.

I was going to take her and buy ornaments tomorrow (restart our annual tradition) and was reminded by her that the Hallmark store is closed due to Covid.  :(
Ahhh, no....... she's right. Darn it!! And she's at a point where she would do it too. Well.... that's just how it goes.
Now I have to decide if I will have us out up the tree together on Friday before she goes, put it up by myself, or just leave it down this year. Not sure yet. It's a lot of work to do it solo. 

Well, there my half week. Exercise, diet and projects, I'm going to have a good time regardless.

One day at a time,

-SS
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W - 40
M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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What do you think she does with the time, Standing, as seeing her mum seems to be such a small part of it? Do you know? Does it matter?
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T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

F
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Well she stayed for thanksgiving, did she do that last year? That’s good!  I would also wonder what exactly she is doing and with whom.  I’m glad she is making progress!
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« Last Edit: November 25, 2020, 07:57:10 AM by Finding Joy »
Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Hi T  :D
Who knows what she does with her time down there. She could be flinging it up, or she could be sitting in a room looking at Facebook. Unknown. Anything is possible but I don't control that, and it's not my choice. The consequences are her's alone. 
At this point, it just doesn't matter. Does no good to worry, and someday there will be a reckoning.... but not today.
I hope that some time with her post-MLC mom is helpful, I know there is a lot of processing that revolves around her (the mom). So...... it has to run it's course. Much to heal, questions to be answered, and acceptance & forgiveness to be found. I hope she finds of it as she can. She'll never heal otherwise.
 ;)

Hi FJ  :D
She was here for Thanksgiving last year, and went away shortly afterward (and then gone for 6 weeks). Yeah, what does she do and who does she do it with. Well, there is no big reveal yet....... and probably not for a long time...... although that "knowing" that the end of this year is important is still very much there (now even more). So what does that mean? I don't know, but God has his way of telling us things, and once again what he said is coming to pass (as always). HA!! Funny how just a week or two ago I was saying my hold on the end of the year was slipping..... silly SS!! You should know better!! How could you question? But we do..... and THAT'S how God lets us know that he is in control. "Oh so you think the year end doesn't matter anymore? *BAM*". LOL!!
It's not something to fear, he said the year end was important, I believed him, then questioned him, now he's making sure a decision point is reached..... what happens next? Beats me, but I do know I have nothing to fear..... probably sounds strange. Pretty normal to me  8)
Still have what he told me in the beginning, and that has not come to pass but I know that someday it will be here. That day will rock my world, probably to it's foundations..... but it's all meant to happen, so fear I do not.

Well, I'm here...... going to do a minor journal update since last night was so cool.
Journaling:

I'm talking to W and stretching last night, she says: "I see your abs". What?? No..... I've lost a lot of weight, that's it (I'm dying to have that 8-pack). Look in the mirror. No, what's she talking about? My stomach is well defined, flat, no gut, but there's no abs either...... "No this chiseling has been this way for months". I figure maybe she had just finally noticed the big changes I've made. Well, we do our nightly workout together, and later I'm getting ready for bed. Look in the mirror and as I'm moving, THERE'S an ab!! WOAH!! Finally!! 1st time in my life, I have an ab.... just one  ::) :P and I'm thinking "where are your friends?". HAHAHA!!
Was so thrilled, one ab!! That means the others are on the way!! Now to diet even harder, workout even more. So close!!
That was a great moment.... and SHE saw it 1st!! It also proves they are always watching.

I also wore a new workout T-Shirt this morning and asked W if she liked it. It's very tight, I've dropped a size and having to replace all my shirts with L instead of XL. She says...... yeah...... your arms..... you look so muscular..... then I noticed that my biceps were stretching the sleeves of the new shirt. Growing, getting bigger, getting better....... I like this new shirt too  ;D

One day at a time,

-SS
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W - 40
M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

m
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SS: just wanted to say how glad I am to read your updates, and that your head is in such a great space. I particularly noted this:

Quote
Who knows what she does with her time down there. She could be flinging it up, or she could be sitting in a room looking at Facebook. Unknown. Anything is possible but I don't control that, and it's not my choice. The consequences are her's alone. 
At this point, it just doesn't matter. Does no good to worry, and someday there will be a reckoning.... but not today.

Just keep at it and hang in there my friend. Congrats on the "ab" and may it be joined by its brethren. And happy turkey day.
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Thanks Marvin  :D

Small Journal update:

I get a call from W (very rare)..... she asks "so.... is the Hallmark store closed? Want to go?".
Wow.... I think it's closed due to Covid, but I call to check..... they're open!!
So she comes and picks me up and off we go.
It was nice. Picked out ornaments like we used to, with one exception..... when she gets to the area where the "Love" and "Anniversary" ornaments are..... she scoots by as fast as she can (she's not there yet)...... but I was waiting for that.... to see what she'd do. I wasn't surprised.
Not a big deal, the big deal was that she remembered and wanted to. Could it be guilt? Could be..... but I don't think so.
As she dropped me off before heading back to work, I turned and looked back and as she pulled away...... she looks at me, smiles and waves (this has not happened since BD).

Baby steps, baby steps.

One day at a time,

-SS
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W - 40
M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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Yep baby steps, Standing.  You are well aware this crisis last for a long time, so make the most of it.

You know you can not control what she does, but you can control how you react to it and you're doing just fine!

Yay on the AB!   ;)
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

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Funny how things come in spurts and fits..... my MLC'er must be going thru a spurt.....

Journaling (Friday night):

Tomorrow, early early in the morning I'm taking W to the airport. I don't know how long this trip will be, but that's ok.

We spent the day together, and it was wonderful. I'm amazed how far she has come..... and amazed that she'd run away when so much progress is being made (but actually that shouldn't surprise me). She's testing herself, and has to continue to do so.

It's so weird to matter. She's sought me out over and over again this week. What is my opinion on things... if I say something in the other room she want to know if I needed something or what I had to say. Just the little things that have been totally absent for..... Hmmmmm...... not just since BD..... but since way, way into shadow. Five years? Six? Maybe more?
A strange but wonderful feeling to matter..... but that can slip away too, so...... enjoy it while it lasts!!  ;) And I am.

All this wanting to be helpful after so long of doing everything solo. I take it and smile but to be honest, it's a little disconcerting. When someone has been absent for so long, for them to reinsert themselves like nothing has happened, is SOOOOOO  :o

Tonight for the 1st time in years and years and years.... I tickled her and she didn't get mad. I couldn't believe it. You know how they test your limits and sometimes you'll test theirs? Well, I figured..... "oh yeah, we'll test these waters....." [tickle tickle] and she laughs and is happy. What? I can't believe it. I must be dreaming. Then she opens up and communicates, really communicates. Nothing heavy, nothing MLC or about us. Just two people.... and not just the superficial, surface only MLC talk either...... wow. Almost in disbelief.
She keeps complimenting me on my appearance, how much weight I've lost and how much muscle I have. What is going on here? It's been this way for a long time..... other people would comment on it while she's around and it would be like she didn't hear or just a "oh yeah" and spin off into some distant thought.
All of a sudden, she's here, she's present.
If I had to guess (just a guess) maybe this is 1st awakening. Temporary, I know..... but I always wondered what it would really look like. She's had moments in the past, but it always seemed like only part of the way there. The "Depth" was missing. Like only part of the person was there.
I look at her, talk to her, interact with her.... and there's depth, consideration, concern, and wanting(?). I want to poke her and see if she's real.
So strange..... a wonderful strange, but strange.

Well, in six hours I'll be alone in the house for who knows how long. I'll have plenty of time to reflect and process soon.

Update: Saturday Morning:
Took W to the airport. She wanted to know about my week (nice).
Turns out she has not told her Mom she's coming again  :o That's very inconsiderate, but it's her choice. She has a ways to go..
We get to the airport and I unload the truck, she grabs on to me in a real hug, lots of feeling in it..... then she looks at me and wants a kiss but hesitates, I start moving toward her and that's all she needed.... 1st kiss in a year. Maybe the 1st kiss initiated by her since BD. Hmmmm, I'm going to have to think about that. I'm not sure when the last time she tried to kiss me...... it's always been me kissing her. Interesting.

She says again that she'll be back before Christmas...... well see. I'm not buying it. Maybe she really believes that right now, but once she gets there things will change.

Well, now it's just me and the birds. They're going to be mad when they figure out momma's not home again.

One day at a time,

-SS
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W - 40
M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

C
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SS, I really appreciate your thread and your perspective on a W who is in this odd place of sometimes present (though in a kind of weird and detached way) and sometimes running (emotionally if not physically). Your progress is remarkable and it seems to be a great example of paving the way.
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F
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Yes, you have done such a great job of walking that tight rope!  Yay for a kiss!
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Good for you SS !
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Together 12 yrs Married 5
5 kids 3- Step (21) (20) (18) Two together ( 8 ) (9)
BD1 March 2018 - I wish I could give you more of what you need
BD2 Aug 2018 - I want a divorce sent by text ILWYBNILWY

O/M Discovered Nov-18

H
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Way to go SS!   Your patience and continued support seems to moving things forward.  Hope her time away opens her heart even more before the Christmas holiday.
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A
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SS,, just touched down onto your thread for a bit and I have to agree with the others.   You are doing a spectacular job of light housing and paving the way, imo.   She seems to be far more responsive lately.  Is it an awakening, or a touch and go?   Hard to say until looking back.   The rear view mirror reveals more than what’s seen through the windshield.   

Your situation is promising imo even if isn’t imminent.   I don’t think that because of her recent behaviour but because of yours, and right from the get go you have been solid and consistent.   Her response to you now is almost a confirmation of that.  I say almost because we can never know for sure what thoughts are in a MLC head and it’s dangerous to assume much in the early days. 

A reconciliation may not be imminent but I’m betting you will get there one day.   :)
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"This too shall pass.  It might pass like a kidney stone but it will pass."
"Don’t blame a clown for acting like a clown.  Instead, ask yourself why you keep going to the circus."

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Thank you C, FJ, F5, HF and A  8)

Love you guys (well everyone here on HS)  :-*

Journaling:
Isn't it amazing how much better sleep is when the MLC'er is off running around? It's nice to have a break now and again just to get your own bearings.... heaver knows this Covid year has not permitted much of that.

I've been super busy doing all kinds of work while W is out. So much more time...... which really just boils down to not watching TV with her, cooking dinners..... it doesn't seem like much when you're doing it but it really adds up. I do miss her, even in this degraded state but I also know that time away has a purpose and that she needs it too.
Speaking of her..... there hasn't been much texting but there has been some..... which is more than any time in the past, so that's a positive. It's almost like she wants to know what's going on here and I don't think it's just to keep tabs.... more like maybe, just a little, she misses it...... because it doesn't revolve around what I'm doing.... it's how is the weather, what are the birds doing, that kinda stuff. Well, maybe she misses and maybe not. That's her bag.

Put together the chin-up station she bought me for Christmas. I must be stronger and lighter, I can do three!! I've always been TERRIBLE at pullups and chinups..... and here I am doing them. Right on!! Always wanted to get good at that, and it's a new process to go thru. Stronger, better, bigger.

I'm going to try fixing her giant printer..... have to take a few days off to disassemble it, throw in the parts and pray they are the right ones to fix it.
Hopefully when I get it all back together there won't be extra parts (that happened when we tried it together... "What are these screws to?").

Now do I put up the tree or not. Decisions, decisions.

One day at a time,

-SS
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W - 40
M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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I have a story to share!!

Tonight I get a call out of the blue, it's a friend that I used to work with a few years back.
Really nice guy, but hmmmmm, a couple of years before W melted down in MLC, he was acting really weird. He wanted to do a hotdog stand, open business, invest in weird ideas... all kinds of strange hair-brained ideas.
Anyways, I didn't know it at the time but he was going into MLC. I figured it out after my W blew up but by that time he had quit his job and moved away.

Well..... we were good friends and he had quite an attachment to me. When he melted down, he abandoned his wife and kids (still financially supported them, but he ran away). I think one of the main reasons we got along so well is I'm a vet, and he actually joined the service right at the age limit of how old you can be to join (which is 30's for officers). That should have been a sign to me, but what did I know back then? LOL!!
In many ways he looked up to me, and I did my best to help him with information on what to do, what not to do in the service.
When it came to his family though...... well, he was very unhappy and downright angry with his W. Irrationally so. And the kids he didn't seem too interested in them either... it was all about him and this new adventure he was about to embark upon. Well he got in, and did very well. When I brought up his family, he just kinds brushed off about them and wanted to change the subject. I really didn't like this, but slamming someone only turns them off and I was going to be a good influencer. I'd encourage him to see his family, or ask how they were doing.... it's always be the same answer, "they're ok.... HEY!!! Did you see bla-bla-bla, wasn't that cool?".   ::)
This went on for awhile, and every so often he'd call me up and try to impress me (why?). Validation.  ::)

Well, tonight I get a call..... it's him. He's coming back to town, and moving back in with his family (whom I've never met). He mentioned his wife and kids, and wanted to get together once Covid is over. Still trying to impress me, but I applauded him in coming back (MLC'ers need encouragement).
He was still unsure, but I could tell that he's trying..... the strange thing is, I don't think he's aware of what's happened to him. More like "I was gone for awhile, fought the bad guys.... and now I'm home".  :o
Being overseas fighting seems to be what he needed, and now (some) of the fight is out of him. Very curious to see if he's aged a lot, but I'm excited to have a chance at being a positive influencer once again. Now that I know what's happened, I think I can do better than before.... not that I could have talked him out or anything.... but they do need positive people around them.
I don't think he would have been a cheater, but you never know. His poor wife and kids..... daddy hasn't been home in a long time.

Well, proof that they do come home sometimes ladies. Boy their heads are REALLY screwed up. Proof too that men need men, just like women need women when the going gets rough and things just aren't right.

-SS
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M - 43
Together 25 years, M 22
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

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Interesting story, Standing.  It's nice you are a positive influence for him.
I don't think men talk enough with each other.

Isn't it funny, how once you've gone through this, you can just pick out the MLCers?
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A quote from a recovered MLCer: 
"From my experience if my H had let me go a long time ago, and stop pressuring me, begging, and pleading and just let go I possibly would have experienced my awakening sooner than I did."

M
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That's a good point about men, which leads me to a question.

What do we see as main differences between men and women in the role of MLCer?

What do we as main differences between men and women in the role of LBSers?
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F
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Mantelly, I really think women for the most part tend to come out of MLC much faster, if they do the work.  For this very reason, we talk things through with other women.  We process our feelings.

I am amazed at how many woman take these guys back after such a long time and what they are put through.  Very few men take the women back if it’s been more than a couple of years it seems like.
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

H
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I would agree with FJ about the part of Women coming out of MLC faster than men.   It's anecdotal but my Dad went through an MLC and real never came out until about 10-15 years later.   My wife is about a year into her MLC and 4 months from BD but at least is expressing herself and showing some signs of trying to come out.   
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